Tag Archives: drug testing

DOT Approves Electronic Forms for Drug Testing


Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

A final rule that took effect on April 13, 2015 amends U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations to incorporate changes to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) chain of custody and control form (CCF) approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). For more information about this rule – which expands the DOT’s definition of the CCF to include both paper and electronic form – visit: Use of Electronic Chain of Custody and Control Form in DOT-Regulated Drug Testing Programs. Continue reading

New Minnesota Drug Testing Case Gives Guidance on Which State Law Controls Background Checks

Court Cases

Written By Attorney Lester Rosen, Founder & CEO of Employment Screening Resources (ESR)

A recurring issue for employers and background screening firms is which state law to apply when a criminal record is found in one state for a job in another state.  Confusion can be created if an applicant is offered a job in one state, but has a criminal record in another state where the reporting requirements may be different.  The proper  “choice of law” can be challenging. Continue reading

Drug Testing Index of US Workers Reveals Decline in Drug Use but Rise in Positive Tests for Prescription Drugs

The 25th anniversary Drug Testing Index™ (DTI) from Quest Diagnostics has revealed overall drug use among American workers declined 74 percent over the past 25 years but positive drug tests for drugs such as amphetamines and prescription opiates has risen dramatically. For more information about the study – released to coincide with the passage of the Drug-Free Workplace Act 25 years ago today on November 18 – visit http://www.questdiagnostics.com/home/physicians/health-trends/drug-testing. Continue reading

Workplace Drug Testing More Common Among African American Workers Study Finds

African American workers are 17 percent more likely than white workers to report working for employers that perform workplace drug testing, according to a study from the Yale School of Medicine published in the Early View of the American Journal on Addictions available at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1521-0391.2013.12109.x/abstract. Continue reading

Marijuana Legalization Legislation Passed in Colorado and Washington Could Affect Workplace Drug Testing

Legislation legalizing recreational marijuana use that passed in two states on Election Day November 6, 2012 – Colorado Amendment 64 and Washington Initiative 502 – would legalize and regulate production, possession, and distribution of marijuana for persons age 21 and older and could affect drug testing by employers in the workplace, according to the eNewsletter State Drug Testing Laws Monthly. To stay current on state laws concerning drug testing, visit http://www.statedrugtestinglaws.com/. Continue reading

Background Check Avoided by Janitor Arrested on Drug Charges

An Elementary School janitor who was arrested after a drug round up by police agencies had avoided undergoing any background checks by the Beaumont Independent School District (BISD) that may have uncovered past drug charges because he was hired prior to 2008, according to a report from KMBT 12 News in Beaumont, Texas. Continue reading

SHRM Study Finds More than Half of Employers Favor Drug Testing Job Applicants

A recently released study examining the use of drug testing programs by employers conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and commissioned by the Drug and Alcohol Testing Association (DATIA) found that more than half of employers (57 percent) conduct drug tests on all job candidates. Continue reading

Studies Show Drugs in Workplace Cost Employers Billions and Small Businesses Employ More Drug Users but Drug Test Less

According to statistics from recent studies on drug abuse by American workers, workplace drug and alcohol abuse may potentially cost U.S. businesses an estimated $100 billion each year and smaller businesses are more vulnerable to drug use in the workplace but drug tested less than larger businesses. In addition, statistics showed that a majority of drug and alcohol abusers in the United States were employed: 75 percent of illicit drug users over 18, nearly 80 percent of binge and heavy drinkers, and 60 percent of adults with substance abuse problems. These statistics were cited on a U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) ‘General Workplace Impact’ page on the DOL website (See: http://www.dol.gov/compliance/topics/safety-health-working-partners.htm) and taken from the ‘Working Partners’ National Conference Proceedings Report sponsored by the DOL, the Small Business Administration (SBA), and the Office of National Drug Control Policy (See: http://www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/dfwp.html#thecost). Continue reading

Court Finds One Strike Rule Drug Test Policy for Employment Screening Does Not Violate Americans with Disabilities Act

According to a recent ruling from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, a hiring policy that permanently disqualifies job candidates from future employment for failing a so-called ‘one strike rule’ drug test that eliminates from consideration job applicants who test positive for drug or alcohol use during the pre-employment screening process does not violate the either Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) or the protection of rehabilitated drug addicts under California employment law. Continue reading

Pre-Employment Background Screening at Missouri Hospital To Include Drug Test for Nicotine

By Thomas Ahearn, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) News Editor

A hospital in Cape Girardeau, Missouri will no longer hire smokers who fail a drug test for nicotine as part of a pre-employment background screening program beginning January 1, 2011, according to a story in the Southeast Missourian newspaper. The new tobacco-free hiring policy – which will not affect current employees – will drug test job applicants for nicotine as part of the hospital’s pre-employment background screening program.

On the “Current Openings” page of the Saint Francis Medical Center website at http://careers.sfmc.net/CurrentOpenings.htm, the following message appears under the heading ‘Nicotine-free hiring policy’ for prospective job candidates:

Because it is important for healthcare providers to promote a healthy environment and lifestyle, effective January 1, 2011, Saint Francis Medical Center has a nicotine-free hiring policy. Applicants will be tested for nicotine as part of a pre-employment screening.

I understand that my application will not be considered if I use tobacco products.

Although Missouri labor law mandates employers cannot refuse to hire and cannot fire an employee for alcohol or tobacco use after working hours off company property, church-related organizations and not-for-profit hospitals – like the Saint Francis Medical Center – are exempt from the code, the Southeast Missourian reported.
The hospital’s tobacco-free stance comes at a time when more private-sector employers in the U.S. are prohibiting smoking in their hiring policies. One reason is that employees who smoke can cost their companies $12,000 a year unnecessarily, according to statistics cited by anti-smoking and nonsmoker rights advocates in the story.
Nicotine drug tests used during background screening have been challenged in court, the Southeast Missourian reports, but a federal court in Massachusetts ruled public policy favored a smoke-free society over the right of individuals to smoke on their own time.

For more information on pre-employment background screening, visit the Employment Screening Resources (ESR) Services page or the ESR website at http://www.ESRcheck.com.

Founded in 1996 in the San Francisco Bay area, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) is the company that wrote the book on background checks with ‘The Safe Hiring Manual’ by ESR founder and President Lester Rosen. Employment Screening Resources is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) Background Screening Credentialing Council (BSCC) for proving compliance with the Background Screening Agency Accreditation Program (BSAAP). For more information about Employment Screening Resources, visit http://www.ESRcheck.com or contact Jared Callahan, ESR Director of Client Relations and Business Development, at 415.898.0044 or jcallahan@ESRcheck.com.