Social and context determinants of drinking during working time – Portuguese GPS findings 2017
Scientific literature points social determinants to distinguish profiles of abstainers and users of psychoactive substances, and among users, different frequency and intensity of use. Particularly regarding alcohol, age and gender differentiations are continually measured. However, many other factors can be included in the estimation of the odds of being an alcohol user. Some of those are related to the labour context in which one is included. Some authors state the type of work, the conditions under which the labour activity is carried out or the status of the worker can influence the use of alcohol. Other authors consider the workplace as reflecting the determinants of use but structured according to the society’s social dynamics.
In this research, the data on General population surveys on the use of drug in Portugal (GPS) carried out every five years since 2001 is the source chosen to provide information about alcohol use. The Portuguese GPS sample of around 12000 interviewees is representative at a national and regional level, by gender and age groups. In the last two GPS, in 2012 and 2016/17, a new set of variables centred on labour variables was added to the questionnaire model. With this set of questions, new approaches on specific contexts such – as the labour context – can improve and complement the analysis on the use of alcohol and drugs.
Besides the information characterizing the activity and the worker’s institutional filiation and situation, there are some information characterizing the work context and the workplace policy towards drinking problems. And also information about the worker’s practices: drinking during the working period (differentiating the use during meals or on other occasions), frequency of use, having colleagues with drinking problems, or the assessment of problems related to alcohol (alcoholism) experienced by the self. Therefore, besides having information on general population’s use of alcohol, including its use at the labour context, a reported (indirect) information on labour context is also available.
With exploratory and inferential models of analysis, this paper seeks to identify factors of greater or lower risk of alcohol use in the general population considering both individual and socio-professional characteristics of individuals and reported information about the work context. Some behavioural determinants found for working population can be considered as risk or protection factors, contributing to the definition of suitable public policies regarding alcohol and workplace context.