Drugs in the Millennial World
The latest Federal government survey show that in the United States among people aged 12 or older, 59.3 million people used illicit drugs in the past year. Eighteen states have recreational marijuana laws. States continue to pass medical marijuana laws including: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia. This is 39 medical marijuana states plus also Washington DC. Fentanyl has become a popular drug since the start of COVID-19 pandemic and overdose deaths have skyrocketed.
Why is it Important to Have a Workplace Drug Testing Policy?
In addition to providing you, the employer, a variety of protections, your workplace drug testing policy can save you money. There are some states, as well as federal agencies, that require a workplace drug testing policy in order to be compliant with their laws and/or regulations. Can you afford to accidentally or intentionally be non-compliant and/or not have a policy? In today’s world of fast-paced information through thousands of media outlets, the cost of the negative publicity of a high-profile accident or court case is a cost most companies are ill-prepared to bear. Add on the monetary cost, and being non-compliant could cripple a small business.
A workplace drug testing policy can also serve to protect employer workplace incidents and accidents. A drug-testing program is a preventive measure that protects the employer from potential incidents in the workplace – by practicing pre-employment, random, and post-accident testing, employers can often detect drug and alcohol users before an accident has occurred. And depending on the policy, the employer can help the user seek treatment in order to prevent future accidents that would cost the company money. In addition, identify abusers can help reduce workplace absenteeism, healthcare costs, insurance premiums, amongst other things.
If an accident does occur, a well written drug and alcohol testing policy not only allows an employer to test the employee when allowable, it provides guidance for an employer to take consistent employment action in the event of drug and/or alcohol use. In addition, if an employee decides to pursue legal action against an employer, a workplace drug and alcohol policy can provide protections in a court of law.
What Constitutes a Good Workplace Drug Testing Policy?
While having any workplace drug and alcohol policy is valuable, there is a definite difference between a good policy and a poor one. The difference between a robust, complete, written policy, and one that is poorly thought out and executed can mean thousands of dollars if an employer ever has a lawsuit brought against them.
Good policies have a clear objective as to why drug testing takes place. Bill Current, President of the Current Consulting Group, LLC, stated “In order to know what kind of drug testing to do, you must first understand why you are drug testing.” Before creating a policy, decide whether you want to test for safety, improved productivity, cost control, increases in health and wellness, minimizing theft and other costly behaviors, or all of the above.
Laws and regulations are constantly changing, and your policy doesn’t change automatically with those changes. An annual policy review is an important part of maintaining your policy, and one that is often overlooked by employers. In addition to ensuring that you are compliant with current laws and regulations, and annual policy review is a great time to remind employees of your workplace drug policy including testing and the consequences of failing or refusing to test.
There is no one size fits all policy that magically works for every state in which you operate and/or covers all drug testing methods and types. Hiring a company that is familiar with the changes in laws and can provide updates on those laws throughout the year, can help to ensure that you are compliant with state and federal regulations, but that you are aware of workers’ compensation laws, unemployment compensation laws, medical and/or recreational marijuana laws, and case laws in the state where you operate. This information not only keeps you compliant, it saves you money!
How Else Can You Protect Your Workplace?
Working with a firm that specializes in the drug testing industry to ensure a safe and productive workplace can provide many benefits to an employer. The Current Consulting Group, LLC, regularly publishes newsletters, industry updates, and legislative updates to keep you up-to-date with industry happenings. CCG also runs the most comprehensive and up-to-date database of drug testing laws in the industry, CurrentCompliance.org. Subscribers to our database receive regular webinar invites pertaining to industry updates and pertinent issues, a monthly newsletter (State Drug Testing Laws Monthly), and many other services.
CCG consultants have over 150 combined years of specialized industry experience, and can contribute to the well-being of your company in a variety of ways. From specialized blog posts/articles to customized newsletters, infographics to social media management and content creation, CCG can help you to not only remain compliant and safe, but also grow your business. CCG consultants are also available to discuss product, strategy, subject matter, business assessment, business strategy, and sales/account management consulting either via online methods, telephonic meetings, or in person, amongst a host of other services.
Interested in learning more about the Current Consulting Group, LLC? Visit Currentconsultinggroup.com, where you can meet our team and learn more about our services, or Currentcompliance.org in order to learn more about our online database. Contact the experts at CCG by calling 215.240.8204 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Our expert team of consultants looks forward to working with you!