Drug testing is standard practice for the vast majority of American companies. Zero-tolerance policies are supposed to deter drug use to promote a drug-free and safer workplace.
The reality is very different, workplace drug use is at an all-time high despite many years of drug testing policies being in place. According to Quest Diagnostics: "Workforce Drug Test Positivity Climbs to Highest Level in Two Decades"
"Positivity rates for marijuana in the general U.S. workforce, based on more than 6 million urine tests, continued an upward climb, increasing 8.3% (3.6% in 2020 versus 3.9% in 2021), the highest positivity rate ever reported in the DTI. Over five years, positivity for marijuana in the general U.S. workforce increased 50% (2.6% in 2017 versus 3.9% in 2021)."
However, let's understand that a positive drug test does not mean that the person is under the influence at the time of the test. Every drug test has a window of detection that at the minimum is of several days, and in the case of Marijuana can be several weeks.
In the era of cannabis legalization and workers' shortages, conventional drug testing practices are getting in the way of a company's ability to attract and retain employees. After all, you wouldn't fire an employee because you found out they drank a beer over the weekend. However, that's precisely how many organizations currently treat marijuana use.
AN INNOVATIVE APPROACH
It’s time to look at the problem with an open mind and address it with an innovative approach, shifting the narrative from “We are a drug-free workplace” that requires a policing attitude to “We are an impairment-free workplace” that is implemented in cooperation with the workforce.
SOBEREYE, a testing and monitoring service that checks a person's eyes to evaluate the risk of impairment on-the-job, has been developed with that objective in mind. The technology measures impairment risk from fatigue, medications, alcohol, and/or drugs with a one-minute self-test. It detects the effect, but not the cause.
Since its introduction in 2018, SOBEREYE has helped thousands of employees stay safe on the job with fairness and respect.