What your employees do in their private life CAN influence what happens at work!
Screening employees for drugs of abuse is a tool an employer can use to determine the fitness for duty of an employee.
It is against the law to be inebriated at work and illegal to do anything that will threaten the physical wellbeing of an individual or material property. No one should be permitted work whilst under the influence of a substance, as the potential impact can be devastating.
Education on the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse is valuable to employers and employees alike, and can be implemented with the use of an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP)
A successful drug screening programme requires a clear, written drug policy that is freely available to all employees.
Why do employers conduct drug tests?
- Alcohol and drug abuse creates health and safety hazards which can lead to minor or serious injuries.
- It can also result in decreased productivity.
- Poor employee morale in the workplace.
- Early detection of employee addiction.
- It aids in the creation of a safe workplace for all employees.
- Comply with legal requirements:
OHSA General Safety Regulation 2A states that every employer has a duty to stop persons from entering or remaining at work if they appear to be under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs.
When should drug Screening take place?
- Pre-employment testing
Prior to employment drug screening should take place as part of the pre-employment medical to identify possible drug abuse and the subsequent hiring of employees using illegal drugs. These conditions need to be clear to the prospective employee.
- Random employee testing
Drug testing taking place unannounced and randomly by placing employees in a testing pool for selection.
- Post-incident testing
Testing following an accident can determine whether drugs/alcohol were a contributing factor.
- Reasonable suspicion testing
When a supervisor or manager suspects that an employee is inebriated, signs and symptoms will be documented and testing will be conducted. It is important that the definition is clear and this process is supervised.
How to start a drug testing programme
HSP offers employers various packages to assist with their company’s Workplace Employee Drug Screening Programme (all of which can be fully customised specific to your needs and budget):
- Assistance with policy writing,
- Initial and refresher awareness training,
- On-site screening tests (5 panel multi drug urine test),
- Laboratory quantitative analysis and report stemming from a non-negative screening test,
- Referrals to a rehabilitation centre.