How some legislation could affect drug testing!
Drug testing has become a vital part of the hiring process. With drug abuse costing U.S. employers as much as $280 billion a year, employers have every reason to be cautious. They have the right to be cautious about bringing aboard new employees who already have issues with drugs or alcohol.
The challenge HR managers face is trying to develop drug-testing policies that adhere to state and federal laws. The reason this challenge creates so many issues is that laws regarding drug testing are always changing. With that in mind, the following two sections will concentrate on two aspects of drug testing that you should focus on as an HR professional.
Current Marijuana Legislation
Any drug-testing legislation related to the use of marijuana is going to be complicated. In 34 states, marijuana is currently legal as a recreational drug and/or a medicinal drug. That’s having a dramatic impact on HR managers who need to fully understand the laws in their respective states before making company policies.
BTW: Marijuana is still illegal at the federal level. That further complicates things for any HR manager who is trying to create a comprehensive drug-testing policy.
Before you create a policy for your company, you need to make sure to account for the legalities in your specific state. If your company has offices in multiple states, you will probably need to develop separate drug testing policies for each facility.
Methods of Drug Testing Matter
In many states, employers are required to choose drug-testing methods that meet state standards. As an HR manager, you need to understand which drug testing methods are acceptable and under what circumstances they are each applicable.
Most likely, the four circumstances under which your company would want to require drug testing would be pre-employment, post-accident, reasonable suspicion and random drug testing. In your state, each circumstance might require a specific type of testing. Your drug-testing policy should address these nuances.
To be clear, your knowledge of the drug-testing laws in your state is an asset to the company. Why? Violations of state drug testing laws come with consequences.
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