Workplace drug testing has become more important in 2016 than ever before. It is no secret that the number of people in the United States who use marijuana is growing rapidly. Hollywood seems to cash in on the sensationalism as producers such as Chuck Lorre are working on new comedy series, portraying the use of marijuana, and glamorizes the use of marijuana, as the “cool” thing to do.
In fact, in Denver there are more dispensaries in Colorado than McDonald’s and Starbucks combined!
It’s not surprising that in states where marijuana has been legalized is some form, employee drug testing is also on the rise. Employers are more concerned than ever about the safety of their employees, customers, and clients. They also worry about theft, absenteeism, presenteeism and productivity.
Occupational Health & Safety reports that:
“Safety concerns are often a company’s primary reason for prohibiting marijuana in the workplace …. Marijuana use has been linked to an increase in job accidents and injuries, and the National Institute on Drug Abuse notes that the short-term effects of marijuana include impaired body movement, difficulty with thinking and problem-solving, memory problems, and an altered sense of time”
In today’s world of rising costs for employers, whether it be health insurance, or a rising minimum wage, employers look for an edge. Many look to reduce risks and nurture a high performing team.
A drug-impaired employee has risks and is less productive, and even smaller employers are drug testing.
Marijuana (unlike alcohol) can stay in the user’s system for 30 days. Popular opinion is that once the high is over, the impairment ends. Surprisingly to many, the science does not support that. Studies show impairment 24 hours after use to as long as 3 weeks later!
Understand that marijuana users believe they are entitled to use drugs and work hard to find ways to pass a test, without quitting, of course. Need evidence? Your favorite web browser won’t have any trouble locating plenty of web sites where you can learn more about cheating a drug test.
Maybe you feel that it’s okay to smoke some pot. A lot of people do. But as an employer, you’re taking on a lot of risk if you allow it.
We’ve been talking about marijuana here. Keep in mind that about 45% of all positive results are marijuana. That’s less than half. Approximately 20% are amphetamines, followed by benzodiazepines (9%) and opiates (10%). And many employers don’t even test for benzos or all the opiates.
Many companies that never tested before are beginning to now. If it’s time for your company to add testing, InOut Labs can help.