American adults are too drugged up to get the best jobs, a number of reports have concluded.
A surge in drug abuse in men and women without a college diploma has caused American companies to struggle to find skilled workers.
In the past few years there has been an uptick in opioid addiction, with the most common being heroin and the powerful contaminant fetanyl.
Fentanyl, the drug responsible for the death of musician Prince last year, is a man-made opioid 100 times more powerful than morphine.
American adults are too drugged out to get the best jobs, a number of reports have concluded (stock image)
These reports show a cyclical nature to the drug epidemic in certain parts of America.
Due to the loss of manufacturing jobs in America, people have turned to drugs as a coping mechanism. The resulting drug abuse leads to even more joblessness, which causes people to feel hopeless.
Jed Kolko, an economist at the job search website Indeed, told Axios people are using drug addiction as a reason to stay unemployed.
He looked at a recent US population survey and found that between 5.6 and 5.7 percent of Americans over the age of 18 didn’t work last year because of illness or disability.
Drug use is considered to be illness or disability, but it s not clear how much of that percentage is caused by it.
Jed Kolko, an economist at Indeed, said people are using drug addiction as a reason to stay unemployed. He looked at a recent US population survey and found that between 5.6 and 5.7 percent of Americans over the age of 18 didn’t work last year because of illness or disability
And the epidemic is hitting American companies as hard as the population, because they are having such a tough time finding skilled workers.
Reports suggest that many owners and managers at manufacturing jobs are turning towards automation because they do not know how to deal with addicted workers.
That means people are losing jobs in favor of robots and computers.
One West Virginia company reported that half of its applicants for a manufacturing job fail or refuse to take a mandatory pre-employment drug test.
In March a survey by the National Safety Council found that over 70 percent of employers in the United States feel the direct impact of prescription drug misuse in the workplace.
Even when taken as prescribed, the drugs can impair workers, NSC President and CEO Deborah Hershman said.
Drug poisonings now eclipse car crashes as the leading cause of preventable deaths among adults.
Figures released in June by the New York Times revealed drug overdoses are now the leading cause of death in American adults under 50.
A New York Times graph shows that drug overdoses are now the leading cause of death in American adults under 50
The data, published in a special report by the Times’ Josh Katz, lays bare the bleak state of America’s opioid addiction crisis fueled by deadly manufactured drugs like fentanyl.
The figures are based on preliminary data, which will form part of an official report by the CDC later this year.
Experts warn a key factor of the surge in deaths is fentanyl, which can be 50 times more powerful than heroin.
PROFESSIONALS ‘MICRODOSING’ ON DRUGS TO BOOST THEIR CAREERS
Professionals are increasingly taking low doses of illegal drugs such as LSD and ‘magic’ mushrooms to improve their mood and performance at work.
The trend for ‘microdosing’, as it’s known, has reportedly become particularly popular in California’s affluent Silicon Valley.
A growing number of people are reportedly taking the substances every day before work to reduce their anxiety.
Devotees do not take enough to ‘trip’ but ingest regular, barely perceptible doses with the aim of experiencing boosted mental clarity and creativity.
Internet forums are full of microdosers sharing their experiences.
In one, a 26-year-old male studying for his final year of a bachelor’s degree while working up to 40 hours a week feels the habit boosts his mental clarity.
He wrote: ‘After doing extensive research on microdosing and reading about the potential to help alleviate depression, increase energy levels, increase creativity and elevate mood I decided to pursue it for its therapeutic value.
‘My thoughts seem to become more fluid and seem to be accessed easier. Reading becomes much more focused and I get involved in the text.’
He reported scoring a B+/A- average on his papers.
There are a small number of advocates of microdosing in the medical community.
Scientist Amanda Feilding, the founder and director of the Beckley Foundation in Oxford, has long been a fan.
Before it was made illegal in 1968, Ms Feilding would take LSD to boost her creativity and even found her performance in the Chinese abstract board game ‘Go’ improved.
The Times said its data showed between 59,000 and 65,000 people could have died from overdoses in 2016, up from 52,404 in 2015, and double the death rate a decade ago.
Now, politicians are taking notice as well.
At the beginning of July, Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen related opioid use to the declining labor participation rate while speaking at a congressional testimony.
And in June, Ohio attorney general Mike DeWine said 40 percent of applications in the state were either failing or refusing drug tests.
‘This prevents people from operating machinery, driving a truck or getting a job managing a McDonald’s,’ he said at a Congressional hearing.
In June, Georgia authorities warned about new forms of fentanyl which are resistant to Narcan, the only known cure for a drug overdose.
Acrylfentanyl and tetrahydrofueron are two new strains of the drug that overwhelm the brain with such intensity that Narcan (the brand name for naloxone) has little to no effect.
Narcan works by blocking the brain receptors which fentanyl unlocks.
Drug users experience their high from opioids because the substance seeks out receptors in the brain, attaches to them, and ‘unlocks’ them – like a key.
Over the next few minutes and hours the drug repeatedly locks and unlocks those receptors, triggering a rush of joy, calm and pain relief.
However, too much of a drug can overload those receptors and start to block the blood flow to the brain.
This causes shortness of breath and a slow heart rate.
Narcan can reverse this dangerous effects in a matter of seconds if it is administered early enough.
Like fentanyl, the substance attaches to brain receptors. But unlike fentanyl, it does not unlock it. Rather, it blocks and protects it, warding off the opioids.
However, authorities are seeing that people who overdose on synthetic forms of fentanyl, such as the two detected in Georgia in June, are so powerful that Narcan cannot stop the drug from continuing to pummel the brain’s receptors.