Legalities of Workplace Drug and Alcohol Testing

When your company needs workplace drug and alcohol testing it is important to follow the law of the land. Every country has their own rules and regulations governing drug & alcohol testing. In the United States it is commonplace and rarely can you find employment without submitting to the initial test, and typically there is random drug testing throughout your employment period. In the UK, according to this gov.uk website, drug testing in the workplace must be part of a full contractual health and safety policy that is part of employee contracts or in the staff handbook. Drug and alcohol testing is expected when:

  • Employees work in areas that impact personal and public safety or security
  • An employees behaviour or ability to handle the job is affected

Because of the Human Rights Act 1998 and the Data Protection Act 1998, it is important the employers not take on the role of policing their employees. Make sure you have a specific, written policy in place and follow the following gov.uk guidelines:

  • limit testing to employees that need to be tested
  • ensure the tests are random
  • don’t single out particular employees for testing unless this is justified by the nature of their jobs

It was concluded that workplace drug testing helped fashion an overall workforce that was more stable, while at the same time decreasing the cost of recruitment, training, and the associated costs of taking on new employees.

Call us on 01302 365036 if you need information about Drug and Alcohol testing for your business or organisation.

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