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Employer of someone with a gambling problem?

Is one of your employees gambling too much? Is gambling encroaching on the workplace and his or her professional life?

Have clear rules at the workplace

According to the Swedish Work Environment Act, the employer is obliged to prevent ill health at work and to provide employees with the occupational healthcare service that the work requires. It is important that there are clear rules and policies for what applies at the workplace when it comes to gambling, especially if gambling takes place during working hours. The occupational healthcare service or other companies that work with issues of gambling addiction can offer support in drawing up such a policy.

What can I as an employer do to help?

As the employee’s representative, your major obligation is to take action if the person is no longer effective in his or her professional role or is in breach of rules. It is difficult to determine whether an employee has a gambling problem. But you should take action if he or she has changed his or her behaviour by, for example:

  • Requesting an advance payment of wages
  • Being unusually tired
  • Behaving dishonestly
  • Finding it difficult to keep to hours of work
  • Having repeated short-term sick leave

Focus on the work-related aspects

Regardless of whether or not gambling problems are involved, it’s important to have a discussion with the employee. Show that you care about the person, that you are concerned and that you require a change. By assuming your responsibility as a manager, you contribute to the company’s well-being and you can help the employee to change a difficult situation.

Depending on how the situation develops, there are a number of alternative ways of providing the employee with further help. You can book an appointment at the occupational healthcare service, or encourage the employee to visit a gambling addiction association. You can also help the employee to make contact with a treatment centre and bear either the whole or part of the cost.

Who assumes financial responsibility for care and treatment of your employee?

Excessive gambling is very rarely work-related and therefore not something for which the employer is obliged to engage the occupational healthcare service. It is therefore the company’s desire and policies that determine which assistance the company will pay for.

Call the Support Line for advice!

Call the Support Line, 020-81 91 00, for support and advice. Or go to www.stodlinjen.se if you want to chat, email or talk with others in forums. You can also contact a gambling addiction association.

Contact Alna for advice about anything to do with gambling addiction
Alna offers advice and support to employers about how to prevent and deal with situations that relate to any form of harmful abuse at the workplace. Alna can help with anything from drawing up treatment policies to investigating individual cases. Find out more about Alna’s courses at www.alna.se.