Managers could ‘alienate staff’ through issuing drug testing

Staff could feel alienated by drug tests.

Managers could end up ‘alienating’ staff and even breaching their human rights by insisting on drug tests within the workplace.

That is according to the drugs charity Release, which has reported a four-fold increase in the number of calls it receives relating to testing on employees.

That is according to the drugs charity Release, which has reported a four-fold increase in the number of calls it receives relating to testing on employees.

Notably, it has revealed that many of those organisations taking such measures are those working in sectors where testing for drugs has rarely been an issue, such as the finance and clerical sectors, with the charity explaining that this upturn could be down to the fact that many managers are looking to get rid of workers without having to make redundancy payouts.

Indeed, many of the employees getting in touch with the charity reported that their employers had announced planned voluntary redundancies just prior to giving staff workplace medicals, which often included drugs tests.

Advising employers on the importance of good management practice in this area, executive director of Release Sebastian Saville said: “This is a worrying practice that may well breach employees’ human rights and their rights to privacy.

“Employers risk alienating staff by forcing them into intrusive tests and should be supporting any staff member who might be experiencing drug problems, not using it as an excuse to make cheap redundancies.”

Testing for illicit substances is already commonplace in organisations where workers are required to operate machinery or undertake driving tasks.

Information taken from learndirect website

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