Worker Drug Use and Workplace Policies and Programs:
Results from the 1994 and 1997 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse
Sociodemographic Characteristics and Current Heavy Alcohol Use
Table 6.3 presents the relative risks of current
heavy alcohol use as they relate to the sociodemographic characteristics
of workers. Major findings include:
In both 1994 and 1997, younger workers (18-24
years old) were found to be more likely to report current heavy alcohol
use than older workers (25-49 years old). For example, regardless of gender,
race/ethnicity, education, income, region, and establishment size, workers
age 35-49 were 1.92 times (OR=.52) more likely in 1994, and 1.69 times
(OR=.59) more likely in 1997, as workers age 18-24 not to use alcohol heavily
in the past month.
In 1994, male workers were 4.17 times (OR=.24)
more likely report any illicit drug use in the past month than female workers;
in 1997, male workers were 5.56 times (OR=.18) more likely to report heavy
alcohol use in the past month than female workers.
Being a black worker, rather than a white
worker, decreases the odds of reporting heavy alcohol use in the past month
by a factor of .53 in 1994 and by a factor of .51 in 1997, holding all
other sociodemographic variables constant.
Although the level of worker education appeared
overall to have no association with current heavy alcohol use status in
both 1994 and 1997, education level was associated with workers=
heavy drinking behavior in 1994 and in 1997. In 1994, workers who had no
high school diploma were 2.7 times (OR=.37) as likely to report past month
heavy drinking as workers who had college degrees. In 1997, workers who
had no high school diploma were about twice as likely to report past month
heavy drinking as other workers.
The level of workers=
personal incomes generally appeared not to be associated with workers=
self-reported current heavy drinking in both 1994 and 1997. However, in
1997, everything else equal, a worker whose annual income was less than
$9,000 was 6.67 times (OR=.15) as likely to report past-month heavy drinking
use as a worker whose income was $75,000 or above.
When other sociodemographic characteristics
were held constant, the establishment size of a workplace was not significantly
associated with workers=
self-reported heavy alcohol use in the month prior to the interview.
In 1994, relative to workers in the northeast
region, workers in the north central region were found to be 1.51 times
(OR=1.51) more likely to report past-month heavy alcohol use. However,
workers in west region were found to be 1.49 times (OR=.67) less likely
to report heavy alcohol use in the past month relative to workers in the