Drug testing potential employees is common practice among many businesses. The theory goes that by investing a small amount of money on a drug test before hiring an employee, you can save major expense and headaches in the long run. While some states require that companies drug test their employees, there are some drawbacks as well. Learn what you need to know about employee drug testing in today’s blog, below.
The benefits of drug testing
For companies that are covered under the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988, drug testing isn’t a choice: It’s a necessity. For example, if your company that falls under the United States Department of Transportation or your company receives grants from the federal government, your employees may be required to submit to drug tests. In addition to being mandated, drug testing can also help to ensure the safety of your employees. Many jobs require alertness and attention in order to avoid injury and when a worker is out of sorts due to drugs, they can become injured much more easily. Not only does drug testing help ensure the safety of your workers, but clients and visitors to your facility as well.
Medical marijuana legalization makes things complicated
One of the major flaws in company drug testing policies that has come up in recent years is the increasing use of medical marijuana. As of now, 17 states as well as Washington, D.C. have legalized the use of medical marijuana and more states are considering implementing similar legislation. However, because the federal government still classifies marijuana as an illegal drug, it can cause some conflict. The best defense is to proactively define your company’s medical marijuana policy. You might choose to implement a zero tolerance policy that allows no drug use among employees whatsoever, even when it is medically necessary. Or you may choose to create a customized policy that allows use for low-risk jobs, but not for high-risk jobs. Only you can determine the best drug policy for your business, but be sure that it is in line with local, state, and federal regulations.
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