Reasons for Drug Testing in the Workplace

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What are the reasons for drug testing in the workplace? This course examines the problem of workplace substance abuse and the benefits of drug-free workplace (DFWP) programs, preparing supervisors to explain and support these programs.

The Problem of Workplace Substance Use, Including Impact on Workers’ Safety, Health and Productivity

Using substances in the workplace is problematic for a number of reasons.

First, it adversely affects safety in the workplace because, well, when you are high or drunk you tend to make poor decisions. And in the workplace, dumb decisions mean risk.

But those dumb decisions also translate into loss of productivity. Not only is the user incapable of handling their tasks, but co-workers are unable to effectively communicate with the user.

Most companies need their employees working together. But when one of your employees is intoxicated, it is impossible for co-workers to involve that employee.

Even further, substances affect overall health for the worse. So even those substances that you think would help with productivity — i.e. amphetamines — aren’t necessarily great for productivity in the long-run. If an employee has a heart attack induced by amphetamines, that employee isn’t going to be terribly productive. Your workplace will be more productive in the long-run by finding sustainable solutions.

The Effectiveness of Drug-Free Workplace Programs and the Economics of Working Drug Free

We go over drug and alcohol policy and program benefits, discussing how the program serves as a deterrent from drug and alcohol use, especially in the workplace. Drug-free workplace programs reduce drug and alcohol use and abuse. Why is that important?

Unless an employee has a true drug dependency, sober employees typically function better than wasted ones. And if the employee does have a true dependency, with a drug-free workplace program in place, the employer may be able to help that employee.

The Key Components of a Drug-Free Workplace Program

We cover the various drug and alcohol testing situations, the methods for administering a drug and alcohol test in each situation, and the drug and alcohol policy that underlies the whole program.

We give you a picture of what a good drug and alcohol policy template should look like.


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