Worried bosses are resorting to more workplace drug-testing and uncovering hundreds of drug-using Waikato workers – including a concerning amount testing positive for methamphetamine (also known as P).
Workplace drug testing in the Waikato more than tripled last year over 2009, according to statistics supplied by the New Zealand Drug Detection Agency. The company – one of the country’s biggest drug testers – performed 2864 workplace tests in the Waikato in 2010, up from 934 in 2009. Of those, 8% tested positive to having drugs in their system – about 229 people in 2010 and 75 in 2009. The Waikato region was above the national average for both methamphetamine (also known as P) and amphetamine use.
In 2009 12% of workers who tested positive to drug use had P in their system compared with 7% nationally. In 2010 it was 9%, compared with 6.7% nationally. Cannabis made up 68% of the positive tests. The prevalence of P in workplace tests came as no surprise to Foundation of Alcohol and Drug Education executive director Colin Bramfitt.