- Combined data from 2008 to 2012 indicate that an annual average of 8.7 percent of full-time workers aged 18 to 64 used alcohol heavily in the past month, 8.6 percent used illicit drugs in the past month, and 9.5 percent were dependent on or abused alcohol or illicit drugs in the past year.
- The highest rates of past month heavy alcohol use among full-time workers aged 18 to 64 were found in the mining (17.5 percent) and construction industries (16.5 percent).
- The highest rates of past month illicit drug use were found in the accommodations and food services industry (19.1 percent).
- The workers in the accommodations and food services industry (16.9 percent) had the highest rates of past year substance use disorder.
Construction workers show up as having problems in lots of ways, partly because their employment is episodic: even highly skilled workers are regularly laid off for a while between projects, and some kinds of work can be shut down for weeks at a time due to the weather. So while they can earn a lot of money while they are working, they have trouble really moving into the middle class.
I wonder about the issues surrounding waiters, bartenders, and casino workers; is is the work, or is it that the work draws a certain sort of person, one who wants to work late hours around alcohol?