Proactive Ways Employers Can Address the Opioid Crisis in the Workplace

The Northwest Wisconsin Workforce Investment Board is convening panel discussions this Spring on ways employers can proactively address the opioid crisis in the workplace. Employers and HR professionals are invited to attend the free workshops called Opioids and Your Workplace. The workshops are scheduled for Monday, May 20th, at SOFTEC in Siren, WI, and Tuesday, May 21st, at Flat Creek Lodge in Hayward, WI. Both events will take place from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Funding for this workshop series is provided by the Northwest Wisconsin Health Education Center.

At both events, business leaders will hear from national experts who work on the intersection of opioids, opioid use, and the workplace. Topics will include a presentation of data from the National Safety Council’s Opioids At Work Employer Survey, workplace strategies and human resources policies to prevent opioid misuse and help employees navigate the opioid treatment and recovery landscape, and reducing stigma and other barriers to successfully addressing opioids in the workplace. Dr. Thomas Hysler, M.D., MPH, will present on the intersection of occupational health, injury in the workplace, and the opioid crisis.

The workplace is a key environment for reaching employees, families, and communities to help prevent further opioid misuse, addiction, and overdose, and to help those already affected. The National Safety Council would like to use this as an opportunity to debut some new materials – and to get some explicit feedback from attendees on the content of the presentations, and discuss barriers and challenges specific to your community. A comprehensive post-workshop discussion will be implemented to gather feedback on the session and curriculum. Presenters from the National Safety Council in Wisconsin and Minnesota, including Rachael Cooper, MFS, will attend to work through the curriculum with attendees.

Registration is required to attend the free workshops. Online registration can be found at For more information about the workshop series or registration assistance, please contact Mary Lois Bolka, Sector and Strategies Coordinator for the Northwest Wisconsin Workforce Investment Board, at 715.682.9141 Ext. 118 or

The Northwest Wisconsin Workforce Investment Board is one of over 600 Workforce Boards in the U.S. and is responsible for the oversight of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act and other training and employment initiatives in northwest Wisconsin, including the counties of Ashland, Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Price, Iron, Rusk, Sawyer, Taylor, and Washburn. The NWWIB Board of Directors is comprised of business leaders, workforce development partners, and tribal representatives who are committed to creating a workforce system that meets the needs of the employers and workers in the region. For more information about this board, please visit

Northwest Wisconsin Workforce Investment Board is an equal opportunity employer and service provider. If you need assistance to access services or materials in an alternate format, call our office at 715-682-9141. Northwest Wisconsin Workforce Investment Board uses WI Relay 711 or 800-947-3529 or WI Relay Spanish 877-490-3723.

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