Archive for September, 2009

Member Question Of The Week

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Question: If an employee fails to provide a sufficient amount of urine during an observed collection, can an employer remove the employee from performing safety-sensitive functions pending receipt of the verified result from the Medical Review Officer (MRO)?

Answer: The Department believes an employee

Member Question Of The Week

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Question: If during a DOT collection, the specimen is out of the acceptable temperature range and the donor refuses to provide a second sample, should the collector discard the sample or send it to the lab?

Answer: In a case where the employee refuses to provide another specimen (see

Member Question Of The Week

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Question: What happens if during reporting for testing the employee cannot provide a specimen due to the fact that he is fasting for religious beliefs. What is the protocol?

Answer: DOT’s drug and alcohol testing program is one in which public safety considerations are first and foremost. Therefore, if an employee in a safety-sensitive transportation position is selected for a drug test, that person must report to the collection site in order to provide a urine specimen. An employee’s decision not to ingest fluids following submission of an inadequate amount of urine is not, in and of itself, a refusal to test. However, fasting is not considered a legitimate medical reason for an employee’s failure to provide a urine specimen.

Regarding random testing:
Generally, the DOT Agencies would permit companies to send fasting employees selected for random tests to collection sites at sundown. They may also permit employers who conduct random drug test selections on a monthly or quarterly basis to schedule fasting employees before or after the fasting time period — as long as the random tests were not predictable. You may want to have companies for whom you conduct collections contact the appropriate DOT Agencies to obtain their positions on random testing selections. The agency links are at: http://www.dot.gov/ost/dapc/oamanagers.html (DOT, ODAPC Representative)

Roadside Drug Testing By Police?

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Idaho and Texas have begun a new program for a select group of officers, where training will be received to draw blood from suspected drunk or drugged drivers. Drivers can refuse a breath alcohol test, but they can be made to give blood under duress (upheld by Idaho’s Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court). “The federal program’s aim is to determine if blood draws by cops can be an effective tool against drunk drivers and aids in their prosecution. If the results seem promising after a year or two, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will encourage police nationwide to undergo similar training.” For the full story, please click here.

Circuit Court Says State Law Applicable To NFL Drug Testing Policy

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit concluded recently that “Minnesota drug testing laws and other statutes apply to a drug testing policy negotiated between a union and unionized employer.” In Williams V. National Football League, the NFL was unsuccessfully able to argue that state laws (in this case The Minnesota Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace Act (DATWA) and the Minnesota Lawful Consumable Products Act (CPA)) are preempted by federal labor law. To read the full synopsis of this legal dispute as written by Dale L. Deitchler of the law firm Littler Mendelson, please click here.

Welcome

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Hello and welcome the the HR News blog! In the coming weeks we will discuss the current state of all that is HR. Please feel free to post any comments or questions here.

Mike Moody, PHR

Director of Human Resources

Global Safety Network

Reasonable Suspicion Training for Supervisors

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

Reasonable Suspicion Training for Supervisors to be held on October 22, 2009 in Grand Forks. Contact Global Safety Network to register today!

Safety & Security in the Workplace

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

Mark your calendars for October 6, 2009 – NOSHA presents “Safety & Security in the Workplace” to be held at the Clarion Inn (formerly Holiday Inn)- FREE and open to the public. Limited space is available! Register on line at www.nosha.net.

National Drug-Free Work Week

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

Mark Your Calendars for Drug-Free Work Week!
The U.S. Department of Labor

Drug Abuse Increasing Among Baby Boomers

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

Illicit drug abuse is increasing among baby boomers (in the 50-59 age range) according to a new U.S. study. Evidence found that many baby boomers are continuing to use illicit drugs as they get older, thus “causing the rate of illicit drug use to rise among the 50 to 59 year old age segment of the population.” Results from a new SAMHSA publication revealed that the use of illegal substances has almost doubled from 5.1% in 2002 to 9.4% in 2007 amongst this age range, compared to other age ranges which have stayed the same statistically or decreased. Read the full story here.