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Construction Industry Hit Hard by Opioid Epidemic

New York, NY- The opioid epidemic has claimed over a million lives since 1999, with 2021 seeing 106,699 drug overdose deaths, 75.4% of which were opioid-related, according to the CDC.

An alarming trend is evident in the construction industry. Recent data from the Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) reveals that construction workers face the highest opioid-related overdose death rates. In 2020, nearly 70,000 opioid-related overdose deaths were recorded, a 36% increase from the previous year.

Construction workers endure a 77% higher injury rate than the national average, often lacking modified duty options and facing pain, job loss, and financial stress. These factors lead to increased depression and opioid usage among this group.

The industry also ranks second in suicides, a stark consequence of chronic pain, depression, and opioid use. It is imperative to address these issues within the construction sector.

To tackle this crisis, PARSE (Preventing Addiction and Support Recovery in Employment) is organizing a “Recovery Ready Workplace Symposium” in New York this December, aimed at creating recovery-supportive workplaces. This event offers a platform for open dialogue and practical solutions to combat the opioid crisis within the construction industry.

For more information on the symposium, please visit the registration page. To join PARSE, contact Chris Assini, Director of Policy for Friends of Recovery – New York at cassini@for-ny.org or Jonathan Rosen, Safety & Health Consultant, National Clearinghouse for Worker Safety and Health Training at jrosen396@gmail.com

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