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Alcohol & Drugs: What you need to know

When considering whether to implement a drug and alcohol testing program, employers should be aware that, for most employers, testing is not required or regulated under the federal Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988. The Drug-Free Workplace Act applies only to federal contractors and grantees. For more details, see Requirements for Federal Contractors and Grantees in this section. The majority of employers are, however, subject to state and local statutes that limit or prohibit workplace testing. These employers may still test employees for a wide variety of substances, but only if the employers follow the state or local rules. Please see the state Alcohol and Drugs section.

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Employers not covered under the Drug-Free Workplace Act (or a state law mandating such a program) have more freedoms when creating drug-free workplace programs. There is no one "right" way to implement a drug-free workplace. An employer's program should be designed to meet the particular needs of its workplace. Some of the issues to consider when drafting a workplace plan are listed below.

Employee education. An employee education program will be most effective if it does not sound like a "top down" mandate from management. It should involve upper- and lower-level management as well as employees.

Supervisor training. Supervisors can play a key role in an effective drug-free workplace program. Supervisors, more than anyone else in the organization, are in a better position to recognize changes in an employee's behavior or job performance. Remember that supervisors are not expected to provide substance abuse counseling; neither are they responsible for diagnosing nor should ...


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More on this topic:

No Federal Rules for Most Employers
Creating a Drug-Free Workplace Program
Drug and Alcohol Testing
Disability Discrimination/Accommodation
Family and Medical Leave and Drug-Free Workplace
Medical Marijuana
HIPAA Considerations
Requirements for Federal Contractors and Grantees
Requirements for Defense Contractors
Requirements for the Transportation Industry
Other Federal Requirements
Workers' Compensation Premium Discount
Additional Information:

State Requirements

Alabama | Alaska | Arizona | Arkansas | California | Colorado | Connecticut | Delaware | District of Columbia | Florida | Georgia | Hawaii | Idaho | Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Kentucky | Louisiana | Maine | Maryland | Massachusetts | Michigan | Minnesota | Mississippi | Missouri | Montana | Nebraska | Nevada | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | North Dakota | Ohio | Oklahoma | Oregon | Pennsylvania | Rhode Island | South Carolina | South Dakota | Tennessee | Texas | Utah | Vermont | Virginia | Washington | West Virginia | Wisconsin | Wyoming |

Alcohol & Drugs Resources

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