On the Frontline— A New Day for Workplace Drug Testing                                                        January 12, 2019

I am very excited to introduce our company to the employment community!  Frontline Custom Drug Testing was created to help today’s employers attract and retain the best and brightest employees while minimizing risk.  We help employers properly administer drug and alcohol testing programs, and steer clear of employees who can badly damage their business and reputation.

Many employers are using outdated drug testing programs and are having difficulties making the programs work effectively in today’s tight employment market.  Some employers’ “do it yourself” practices or older drug testing programs contain requirements that may be illegal under recent OSHA rulings or state law changes. Others have simply chosen to forego drug testing altogether because “I wouldn’t be able to hire anyone for my business.”  We hear this unfortunate message most frequently in the hospitality and construction industries.

Let’s address the elephant in the room.  Marijuana.  Legalization and decriminalization of medical or recreational marijuana in over thirty states (and more in the process) has changed the landscape for employers.  While we still recommend testing for marijuana (marijuana is still illegal under federal law), most non-federally regulated employers are not required to do so.  If employers want to modify the rules for marijuana, they need a customized program that clearly defines the rules and guidelines to be followed.

Many employers are not drug testing at all because of concerns about marijuana.  They simply want to avoid excluding otherwise qualified employees who use marijuana for medical purposes, or who participate in legal activities outside of the workplace.  Let’s face it, most employers are more concerned about present impairment or addiction than about whether someone exercised a legal choice last month on a vacation trip to California.  Or, they want to avoid the hassles of trying to deal with changing marijuana laws and changing testing requirements. By not drug testing at all, they are extending a welcome mat for employees who abuse “hard drugs” like cocaine, crystal meth, heroin, oxycodone, amphetamines, PCP and more.  Employees who abuse these drugs present substantial risks to their employers, their co-employees and the public.  I don’t want them working for me!

The difference between Frontline Custom Drug Testing and a lot of drug testing companies is that we realize “one size does not fit all” when it comes to drug testing programs.   Instead of “shoe-horning” organizations into a standard plan, we work closely with our clients to determine who is tested, when and how often they are tested, what drugs they are tested for, what happens when someone “fails” a drug test or “self-admits” to a drug problem, and many more factors.  We work with employers to determine how they want to treat medical marijuana and/or recreational marijuana.  Then, we build a custom-tailored plan for their organization.  In addition, we work closely with our clients to implement the plan, administer the testing and provide the critical medical reviews required by law when a test preliminarily indicates a positive result.

Refraining from drug testing is simply not a good strategy.  Positive employment drug test results have skyrocketed particularly in the Northeast and Southeastern United States.    Employers cannot afford to surrender their stability and future by turning a blind eye to the dramatic changes in today’s society, employment market and drug testing arena.

Join me on the Frontline!

Kim Perkins, President