Positive Drug Tests

When a positive drug test has a positive ending ……yes it can happen!

To test or not to test? A dilemma many employers face when they suspect their employees may be using drugs.
When we ask our clients “do you drug test?” a common response is “If we test, I will lose half my staff” or “I’m concerned I will lose a great employee”.

We get it! It’s hard to find good staff and to dismiss an employee because of their lifestyle choices is a hard decision for you as an employer to make.

The risk of ignoring the issue is all too real though if an accident were to happen on-site and you were aware that drugs may have been a factor. You as the PCBU may be held accountable.

In a recent case, the Success Group helped our client who subscribes to our Success HR Service to navigate their responsibilities to continue to provide a safe workplace and support an employee who they did not want to lose.

Client Case Example
Joe had been working for the company for several years and in late 2019 was chosen to participate in a random drug test which subsequently returned a positive result for both meth and THC. Instead of terminating for serious misconduct, Joe was offered an alternative solution to participate in a rehabilitation program. Initially, the results began to look promising with levels reducing in the 1st and 2nd test, however, in the 3rd test the results showed no meth but an increase in THC from the previous results and the 4th test returned a result which was higher THC Level than the initial result.

We started to have concerns that the employee was not taking the results seriously. So, after speaking with the clients and recommending if we continued to do nothing, we not only not following your workplace policies but in danger in setting a precedent that would affect all your staff going forward.

The Success Group began the dismissal process by providing the required documentation and attending meetings with Joe. We facilitated a resolution to move the employee on.

But that is not the end of the story. In our meetings with Joe, we could see his remorse and his willingness to change. We also knew he was a reliable worker and that our client did not want to lose him as he would be difficult to replace.

The Success Group then offered a solution. If he would continue the rehabilitation program and produce a negative drug test, he could potentially be employed by ourselves in our labour hire division and continue to work in his previous role with the client. With the goal of continued negative results returning to our client as a permanent employee.

Joe put a concerted effort to change his lifestyle with encouragement from his wife and his family. Three weeks after being dismissed he returned a negative test result and returned to work through the Success Group. We will continue to monitor and hopefully return Joe to a permanent position with our client.

Joe also was out of the bad books with his wife and was allowed back in the house from his banishment to the garage, as we said with encouragement from his wife.

Our Success HR Subscription service offers small to medium size businesses a cost-effective solution to having an HR department within their business.

With the story above our client had access to our health & safety management system and we provided regular drug screenings. When a positive result was returned, our client turned to our employment relations department to manage a rehabilitation process and eventually assistance in the disciplinary process, which as any employer knows is a stressful time. Plus, we could then offer a further solution in utilising our labour hire department.

A one-stop solution for our client. So instead of using 3 different providers, we offered a seamless process.

If you would like to hear more about The Success Group and how we can help your business, please call Louise on 021 366 414