The US Department of Health and Human Services states that nearly 75 percent of current drug users ages 18-49 are employed–more than 8.3 million workers. For an employer, that number has to be intimidating. Further, government and private sector employers ascribe to separate rules.
Employer’s policies for drug and alcohol tests
There are restrictions concerning employer’s rights to screen potential hires and employees. Private sector employers seem to have the right to test employees at will. Government employers, bound by the Constitution, have to show a compelling reason to perform a screening. However, some exceptions exist for government employees…pilots, for example.
As an employer, it is smartest to have a written policy regarding drug and alcohol testing. Further, an employer should inform the employee of its policies and procedures.
Policies should contain:
- Definitions of drugs and alcohol,
- When testing is permitted,
- The employee’s rights within the state the testing procedure occurs,
- Employer’s expectations,
- What is involved in administration of the screening,
- The type of screening being done,
- Laboratory procedures,
- What constitutes passing or failing a test,
- Follow-up procedures including options should the test be labeled positive, and
- Confidentiality of the employee’s record
Most drug tests involve analysis of a biological specimen: urine, hair, blood, sweat or saliva. Different tests are performed to detect different drugs, but most employers order the testing of a urine sample. The employee is usually instructed to take the test at a specific cite or laboratory.
Drug and alcohol screenings have become common practices
The staffing or recruiting professionals at The Lee Group have provided this information in service to our clients. We are committed to foster and maintain successful relationships to help you grow and succeed.