France: Zero Tolerance of Alcohol in the Workplace
According to a recent judgement in France, when there is a high risk to employees or third parties, employers are entitled to prohibit the consumption of alcohol, including outside the workplace.
In France, alcoholic beverages such as wine, beer, cider and perry are allowed in the workplace. Other alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
If the consumption of these alcoholic beverages is likely to create a danger for workers, the employer must provide for measures to protect their health and safety and to prevent any risk of accident. These measures may include limiting or even prohibiting consumption of alcoholic beverages in the workplace. Such measures must be proportionate to the purpose for which they are intended.
A recent judgement specifies,
- that the employer may also prohibit any consumption of alcohol by the employees concerned, in circumstances where there is a particularly high danger to employees or third parties, such as those occupying safety and security positions.
- that the prohibition of alcohol consumption can also cover the consumption of alcohol outside the workplace if this results in the employee being at work with alcohol in his or her system.