Why Does The Hospitality Industry Have A Drug Problem? A Delve Into The Details

Last Updated on: 22nd November 2023, 05:00 am

The hospitality industry has long had a bad reputation for drugs, alcohol and addiction. And of course, while it’s not across the board and in every bar, restaurant and hotel, there is some truth behind it too.

Of course, it isn’t unique to the industry, but it is a lot more prevalent. But why are more people in hospitality checking into private drug rehab than the likes of retail or white-collar roles?

The Nature of the Work

One reason why the hospitality industry has a drug problem is the nature of the work. Many jobs in this industry involve long hours, high levels of stress, and low pay. This can lead to feelings of burnout, fatigue, and depression, which in turn can make individuals more susceptible to drug use. The late hours and party culture associated with many jobs in hospitality can also contribute to the prevalence of drug use, with employees often socializing after work and using drugs as a way to relax or unwind.

Ease of Access

Then there’s the ease of access. Many individuals working in this industry have direct access to alcohol and other substances, which can make it easier for them to experiment with drugs. The prevalence of drug use among customers can also contribute to the problem, with some hospitality employees using drugs in order to fit in with their customers.

The Young Nature of the Workforce

The transient nature of the workforce in the hospitality industry is another factor that can contribute to drug use. Many employees in this industry are young and may not have strong social networks or support systems. This can make them more vulnerable to drug use, as they may be seeking a sense of community or belonging that they may not find in their work environment.

The stigma attached to addiction, and not coping with the roles in hospitality

The stigma associated with drug use can also make it difficult for individuals to seek help, as they may fear losing their jobs or being ostracized by their colleagues. There’s also a culture within many establishments across hospitality that are “go hard or go home”, with pressure on getting the job done despite burnout and it all being part and parcel of the industry. That is beginning to change, but so many lives have already been lost to it.

Despite the challenges facing the hospitality industry, there are steps that can be taken, and are now being taken by a new breed of establishment owners, to address the drug problem. Employers can provide education and resources to employees about drug use and abuse, as well as offering mental health and addiction support. Creating a culture of openness and acceptance around these issues can also help to reduce the stigma associated with drug use and make it easier for employees to seek help when needed.

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