Recently, The Baltimore Sun published an article entitled: “Baltimore Eliminates Pre-employment Drug Testing for Many City Jobs” . If we take this headline at face value, it seems like a shocking assertion. Unfortunately, in our fast-paced news environment today, many of us unwittingly absorb headlines without reading the content of the piece thoroughly. According to the headline alone, it may seem that pre-employment drug testing is not being conducted in Baltimore, but this is simply not the case. It’s extremely important to beyond the headline (https://www.preemploymentscreen.com/go-beyond-the-headlines-thinking-critically-about-what-you-read/) and consult with competent employment counsel rather than relying on the news. Only a professional can provide you with accurate, up-to-date information regarding pre-employment drug testing.
Due to staff shortages, it’s true that some industries in the area may see decreased drug testing. With the rise of the Omicron variant, some businesses are in dire need of new employees. The idea is that this will hasten the hiring process. However, pre-employment drug testing is not in any way being eliminated entirely. In the article, it is emphasized that drug testing will still be utilized for positions of trust (workers that are responsible for taking care of children, others’ safety, currency or other items).
Now, think about your business. How many roles in your company might be considered positions of trust? If you own a company that hires drivers, you are 100% responsible for the safety of others on the road. If you own a retail establishment, you also have workers who are responsible for handling, depositing and transferring funds. No matter what type of business you run, you most likely have employees in positions of trust. This is why it is always key to update your job descriptions and include a link between essential duties and pre-employment drug testing requirements. Potential employees should be aware of what they will be accountable for and why the testing is so important.
The Baltimore Sun article also proclaims that the city maintains the right to perform pre-employment drug testing because many workers show up to work under the influence. We believe that if any employee appears to be impaired, two supervisors should immediately conduct an evaluation based on observable behavior. If two managers can confirm they’ve witnessed suspicious behavior, they should then document it carefully. At that point, the supervisors can meet with the employee to discuss what happens next.
James P. Randisi, President of Randisi & Associates, Inc., has since 1999 been helping employers protect their clients, workforce and reputation through implementation of employment screening and drug testing programs. This post does not constitute legal advice. Randisi & Associates, Inc. is not a law firm. Always contact competent employment legal counsel. Mr. Randisi can be contacted by phone at 410.494.0232 or Email: email@example.com or the website at randisiandassociates.com