Basic Elements of a Drug-Free Workplace Policy

Basic Elements of a Drug-Free Workplace Policy

When considering what to include in a drug-free workplace policy, there are a few components.

In 2021, drug overdose deaths reached a new high. According to the CDC, as of December 2021, over 103,000 people died of a drug overdose. The CDC said when the investigation is complete, it expects the total number of people to be around 107,600.

According to the CDC, 70 percent of people who have a substance use disorder are employed. When considering what to put in a drug-free workplace policy, there are a few basic elements.

The first component the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) suggests is a written policy. This policy should include the following:

  • “The rationale for the policy, such as organizational goals and compliance with laws or regulations
  • Expectations for compliance, including who, what, when, and where
  • Assistance options to support employees in following the policy
  • Consequences for violating the policy”

The second suggested component is employee education. It’s important for employees to know and have training on the new program as well as the risks associated with substance abuse.

The third takes education to the next step with supervisor training. Supervisors should be aware and trained in legal areas, documentation, service referral and acclimation to the workplace post-service.

The fourth component is an employee assistance program (EAP). EAPs are designed to help employees with personal and work related-problems that can affect “mental and emotional well-being,” according to the US Office of Personnel Management. EAPs can be in house, external, blended, management-sponsored, member assistance or peer-based.

The fifth element is drug testing. There are a variety of factors with this type of program, including location of test, type of test tests and drug categories. Tests can be collected on-site or at a laboratory. Samples collected can include hair, saliva, urine or sweat and can test for drugs like cocaine, marijuana, ethanol, methadone and more.

When starting a drug-free workplace program, be sure to research and follow laws and regulations that apply to your specific company and industry.

For more information on drug-free workplace policies, listen to our Workplace, Substance Abuse & Staying Safe episode of OH&S SafetyPod.

About the Author

Alex Saurman is the Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety.

Download Center

  • Industrial Premium Library

    Empower your workforce with the manufacturing, industrial maintenance, operations, HSE, compliance, and professional development skills they need to complete their tasks efficiently and safely. Not only will you boost productivity, reliability, skills, and morale but you’ll also onboard faster, and retain your best employees while meeting regulatory standards. Vector Solutions offers over 1,800 award-winning eLearning courses designed to keep your employees safe, transfer knowledge of fundamentals, and develop industry and job-specific skills that reduce downtime, maintenance costs and more.

  • Safety Metrics & Insights Webinar

    EHS professionals have been tackling the subject of how to best measure performance for many years. Lagging indicators like the Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) and Days Away Restricted Transfer Rate (DART) are a good place to start, but you shouldn’t forget about the leading indicators that your workforce does every day to prevent incidents from occurring. Learn about some of the most common KPIs of safety programs and how Vector EHS Management software can be used to track these metrics in this webinar.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively. Download this guide for details on risk matrix calculations including severity, probability, and risk assessment.

  • OSHA Recordkeeping Guide

    In case you missed it, OSHA recently initiated an enforcement program to identify employers who fail to electronically submit Form 300A recordkeeping data to the agency. When it comes to OSHA recordkeeping, there are always questions regarding the requirements and ins and outs. This guide is here to help! We’ll explain reporting, recording, and online reporting requirements in detail.

  • Safety Metrics Guide

    Is your company leveraging its safety data and analytics to maintain a safe workplace? With so much data available, where do you start? This downloadable guide will give you insight on helpful key performance indicators (KPIs) you should track for your safety program

  • Vector Solutions

Featured Whitepaper

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - September 2022

    September 2022

    Featuring:

    • ESG
      EHS Will Guide Future ESG Success for Many Organizations
    • MACHINE GUARDING
      Handling Material Handlers: Training Beyond PIT Requirements
    • EHS SOFTWARE
      The Missing Link with EHS Software
    • HEARING PROTECTION
      Noise Surveys from the Trenches
    View This Issue