Russian official urges action on workplace alcohol abuse

A top Russian official has called upon state-owned arms producers to introduce an ethics code in order to battle alcohol abuse in the workplace.

Russian deputy prime minister Olga Golodets, speaking to HR directors of major state-owned firms, lamented “a propensity for alcohol abuse” at the plants.

She said that “the lack of discipline” comes with a “high price not only for the factories, but for humankind.”

Among the participants were representatives of the manufacturer of air-defence missile systems Almaz-Antei and nuclear corporation Rosatom.

She also called on factory directors to set an example for their employees and cut down on drinking at office parties.

“I myself have seen corporate parties which were nothing like corporate parties,” Golodets told the officials.

This year, a report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development showed that 30% of Russian deaths in 2012 were attributable to alcohol, the highest ratio among the nations it tracked.

Privately-owned firms have raised fears about alcohol and drug addiction among Russian workers as well.

Leading steel producer Severstal signed a co-operation agreement this month with the Federal Narcotics Service to help battle substance abuse at its factories.

Severstal’s press office reported that 21 people were caught high on drugs in the first eight months of the year.


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