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Drug Testing In The Work Place Essay, Research Paper

In almost every career job, before a new employee is hired, drug testing is administered. However many jobs stop at that point; not believing, or choosing to ignore the fact that employees may be using drugs. Random drug testing in the work place is a good practice. Although people complain that it is a violation of privacy, companies have a business to run and don’t need the responsibility or the hassle of a drug addicted employee.

Drugs change behavior and limit the ability to accurately complete tasks. There is also evidence that drug dependant employees use more sick leave and medical benefits than other employees. This is a cost to the employer in many different aspects. They have to pay out for medical expenses of the employee and sick absences can mean less or inadequate production for that day. No matter what the job calls for, whether it’s flipping burgers or working in a factory, missing people cause the company to work harder to make up for the addict who’s absent.

Poor judgment and impaired motor functions mean an accident-prone employee. Operating a complex piece of machinery while impaired by drugs poses serious risks to others. Would anyone want to get into a plane if they knew that their pilot had just done a hit of Acid? Acid is a hallucinogen and no one would want to fly in a plane if the pilot was seeing mountains that moved in front of the plane wherever it went . . . but really weren’t there. That would be a scary ride! Airline pilots, air traffic controllers, train operators, taxi drivers and bus drivers are only a few examples of occupations where even the slightest bit of drug use could be life threatening for all those involved. Factory workers are not an exception. There are huge machines in a factory that when operated by an impaired employee, could cause the loss of a limb, or even the loss of a life.

An employee, who is addicted to drugs, may not be able to support the growing habit on their current salary. A company may find that not only are they paying for these employees’ health problems, but that they are also supporting their habit. The companies’ cash, supplies, equipment, and products may be stolen by the addict and sold to help buy drugs. In addition to the losses, the ongoing threat can mean costly security measures for many companies.

Many people appose random drug testing because they feel it is a violation of privacy. Having a career at a reputable company is a privilege; the success of their business rests in the hands of those who operate it for them. By doing random drug testing the company is protecting their investment, not only in their product, but also in the employee. If the employee has nothing to hide, then drug testing should not be a violating issue. The concern of companies about employees’ privacy often leads to the employer, fellow workers and the union ignoring the real problem. They don’t want to upset anybody; they don’t want anyone complaining; however this is neither wise nor appropriate. If an employee gets upset about taking a random drug test and can not understand the consequences of doing drugs, then that person does not need to be a part of the companies’ success.

Addiction is a disability and not one that calls for reasonable accommodations. It is a disability that calls for action on the part of the employer. If a company is truly concerned about their production and success, random drug testing is essential to the process. People who use drugs belong in a padded room while they detox and rehabilitate. Then at that time they can train to re-enter a drug free work place.


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