Drug testing in the workplace


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This is about the pros,cons, and facts about drug testing in the work place.

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Drug testing in the workplace

  1. 1. Drug Testing in the Workplace Judith Soto – Group Leader, Mitchell Bragg, Reyes Gutierrez, & Brandon Edwards PSY 103 Summer 2013
  2. 2. Introduction Substance abuse has made it necessary for many American firms to create strategies that would help keep it out of the workplace. Employment drug testing is a powerful risk tool that provides far-reaching organizational benefits. Some firms have sponsored extravagant programs to control alcohol and drug abuse. However, these programs have tended to rely on a supervisor's, a coworker's, or an employee's judgment about the presence of substance abuse in another individual or themselves. In the 1980s, some firms began to adopt drug and alcohol testing as an fair strategy to detect and control substance abuse. Supporters of this approach claim that an employee's positive test results can be linked to impairments in job performance, safety risks, and absenteeism. The drug testing industry was born 30 years ago, after the launch of federal drug testing requirements in the 1980s.
  3. 3. What is the Definition of drugs? • Any substance that when taken into the living organism may modify one or more of its functions. • This definition includes aspirin, milk of magnesia, penicillin, caffeine, alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine.
  4. 4. Drug Testing Trends • There has been a growing trend of drug testing from the mid- 1980’s to the present. • One study shows that 18% of Fortune 500 companies tested employees in 1985, and 1991 the proportion double to more than 40%.
  5. 5. Drug Testing Trends Cont. • A survey in 1988 indicated increases in the testing of both applicants and current employees for drugs. • 38% of organizations tested job applicants, to 28% in 1987. • 36% tested current employees, to 28% 1986.
  6. 6. Drug Testing Trends Cont. • By 1991, 48% of Fortune 1000 firms engaged in some type of drug testing. • Recent studies have shown about 42% get pre-employment tested. • About 29% already employed get tested.
  7. 7. Drug Testing Pros • Pre-employment testing can identify users and prevent cost of recruitment and training. • Random-testing can help raise awareness and deter illegal drug use.
  8. 8. Drug Testing Pros Cont. • Testing can prevent accidents • It can reduce compensation cost • Prevent abusers from taking away from the company’s competitive edge. • Testing programs have been shown to improve employee morale and productivity
  9. 9. Drug Testing Pros Cont. • Testing can reduce absenteeism. • Reduce turnover and theft rates. • Vacant positions, as they become available, will attract mature, responsible, drug-free applicants.
  10. 10. Drug Testing Pros Cont. • Drug addicts will soon be eliminated from the workplace. • Improved efficiency and heightened public confidence in the product and/or services of the company may cover and even exceed the cost of testing.
  11. 11. Drug Testing Cons Cont. • Management won't win any workplace popularity contests. • Management may be accused of invading employees' privacy. A written agreement of compliance with the drug-testing policy must be signed by each employee prior to its implementation. Signing the same agreement will be a condition of employment for future recruits to the organization.
  12. 12. Drug Testing Cons Cont. • Management may wish to offer a signing bonus to help retain reliable, long- term employees. • Testing equipment and personnel may be expensive. However, bulk rates are often available for large companies.
  13. 13. Drug Testing Cons Cont. • Although drug testing detects recent drug use, it does not show if an employee is presently impaired and unable to perform job functions. • Drug users work only two thirds as efficiently ad nonusers • Companies pay up to 300 percent more for medical cost for drug users that for nonusers.
  14. 14. Drug Testing Cons Cont. • The cost of worker’s compensation claims tend to be about five times higher for users than nonusers.
  15. 15. Facts: • In 1997, two states – Arizona and California – adopted laws that permit the use of marijuana for certain specific medical purposes. • Americans concerned about the “drug problem” has two parts: o One involves the misuse of legal and potentially helpful drugs such as codeine and morphine. o Two involves illegal drugs with no medical value such as LSD and heroin.
  16. 16. More Facts: • Research indicates that 74 percent of illicit drug users are employed in full-time positions. • One out of four hospital admissions is from drug use. • Forty percent of all accidents that result in hospitalization are because of drugs.
  17. 17. More Facts: • The national cost of all accidents from drug abuse is $41 billion per year. • The Drug-Free Act of 1988 requires Federal grantees and contractors having a contract for property or services of $25,000 or more to provide a drug free workplace.
  18. 18. More Facts: • While marijuana is still the number one most-abused drug globally, prescription drugs have moved into second place, overshadowing cocaine. Technology has played a big role in these changes. For example, the street distributor has morphed into the Internet distributor, making it easier than ever to access prescription medication without ever visiting a doctor. • The use of pill mills, which are clinics, doctors, or pharmacies that are prescribing large amounts of prescription medication for non- medical use, is also becoming prominent in the United States, prompting abusers to travel across state lines to access these mills • Drug Identification Kits: Law enforcement and school officials now have the ability to instantly test substances found while out in the field or on school premises. It is a very cost-effective method of substance testing, and eliminates the need for lab analysis which can cost up to $200-300.
  19. 19. What Can Be Tested? • Metabolites and Metabolism • Urine • Drug Urinalysis • Breath • Saliva • Blood • Hair • Sweat
  20. 20. Testing Methods Confirmatory Tests • Immunoassays • Enzyme Immunoassays • Radioimmunoassay • Gas Chromatography • Mass Spectrometry • Thin-Layer Chromatography
  21. 21. What to Avoid Before A Drug Test • Alka-Seltzer Plus • Allerest • Bronkaid • Contac • Donnagel • Nyquil • Primatene • Sinutab • Sudafed • Triaminic • Poppy seeds
  22. 22. Drug Detection Periods For Urine
  23. 23. Initial Test Confirmation Test
  24. 24. Drug Testing by Industry
  25. 25. Conclusion • There are many pros and cons to drug testing but there is one thing that no one can dispute and that is the fact that drugs do impair a person as long as the drugs are in their system. • Consequences of drug use are NOT restricted to a minority of heavy users or “addicts” who are easily identified. • Often problems can arise from occasional use/intoxication. • Most workplaces are concerned about the impact alcohol and other drugs may have in their workplace. • Most workplaces have at least one response in place to address alcohol and other drug related harm. • Most workplaces are not considering doing anything further to address alcohol and other drug issues.
  26. 26. Works Consulted • Beverly A. Potter, Ph.D. and J. Sebastian Orfali, M.A. Pass The Test An Employee Guide To Drug Testing. Berkeley: Ronin Publishing, Inc, 1999. • Breugem, Lindsay. SafeWork. 2006. 26 June 2013 <http://www.safework.sa.gov.au/uploaded_files/workplace_report.pdf>. • Colakis, Peter N., and Roger Bruce. "Drug Testing In The Workplace." Professional Safety 52.7 (2007): 31-36. Academic Search Premier. Web. 24 June 2013. • DiThomas, Melissa. Occupational Health & Safety. 1 October 2012. 26 June 2013 <http://ohsonline.com/Articles/2012/10/01/Drug-Testing-Promotes-Workplace- Safety.aspx?m=1>. • Employment Background Solutions. 2010. 26 June 2013 <http://www.ebiinc.com/drug- testing-facts.html>. • Get The Facts. 1998-2013. 26 June 2013 <http://www.drugwarfacts.org/cms/Drug_Testing_Employee#sthash.uhZ4VfQE.Q2vPSI93.d pbs. • Hartwell, Tyler D.Steele, Paul D. "Prevalence Of Drug Testing In The Workplace." Monthly Labor Review 119.11 (1996): 35. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 24 June 2013.
  27. 27. Works Consulted Cont.• Gray, James. Tikkun. 25 June 2013. 26 June 2013 <http://www.tikkun.org/nextgen/drug- prohibition-is-the-problem-reflections-from-a-former-judge>. • Monroe, Judy. The Facts About Drug Testing. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, 1990. • Newton, David E. Drug Testing An Issue for School, Sports, and Work. Berkely Heights: Enslow Publishers, 1999. • Office of Justice Programs. n.d. 26 June 2013 <http://www.bjs.gov/content/dcf/du.cfm >. • Steeves, Richard. "Recognising Drug Abuse At Work." Occupational Health 63.9 (2011): 27- 30. Academic Search Premier. Web. 24 June 2013. • West, Robert H. Coombs and Louis Jolyon. Drug Testing Issues & Options. New York: Oxford Universtity Press, 19991. • Wikipedia The Free Encyclopedia. 26 June 2013. 26 June 2013 <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychoactive_drug>. • Zeidner, Rita. "PUTTING DRUG SCREENING TO THE TEST. (Cover Story)." HR Magazine 55.11 (2010): 25. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 24 June 2013. • 2013. 26 June 2013 <http://www.testcountry.com/categories.html?cat=256&left>.