Employers Must Put Safety First in a Drug-Friendly Culture
The most recent Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Index shows the greatest increase in use of all illicit drugs by U.S. employees in 12 years, based on laboratory drug test results. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, drug and alcohol-related deaths in the workplace soared in 2016 with a spike of more than 30 percent in a single year. The BLS data also show that fatal work injuries in 2016 were the highest since 2008. These trends are not the way we want to go, and robust drug testing policies as well as a work culture that enforces safety first is the path to reversal.
The effort to legalize marijuana, whether for ostensible medical or recreational purposes, is the tip of the iceberg in an effort to legalize all drugs. U.S. employers have the opportunity to not only hold the line amid our drug-friendly culture, but also a responsibility to protect the vulnerable worker from accident or injury by those who may be under the influence at work.
Jo McGuire is an advocate, speaker and writer for safe and drug-free workplaces, families and communities as the founder and president of Five Minutes of Courage. She also serves as the Senior Project Manager for TSS Inc, a workplace screening services provider, specializing in workplace drug and alcohol policy writing. Jo was appointed as a member of the Taxation, Banking & Civil Law workgroup for the Colorado Governor's Task Force to regulate Amendment 64 in Colorado due to her expertise in the field of workplace drug and alcohol testing. She is a national conference speaker, published author, and a founding affiliate of Colorado's Smart Approaches to Marijuana.
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Duration: 1 Hour