HR’s Checklist for Dealing With Substance Misuse in a Workforce

An employee’s use of illegal drugs, whether at work or at home, can affect relationships with colleagues, increase absence, reduce productivity and cause an unsafe working environment. The possession of illegal drugs, and buying or selling them, also exposes employees to the risk of criminal charges.

Employers have a legal duty to ensure, as far as reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of all their employees. This involves providing a safe place (and systems) of work. What this requires of the employer will depend on the nature of the business and the particular role of the employee concerned.

The Information Commissioner’s Office has issued good practice guidance which contains some recommendations for situations where drug testing will or will not be acceptable.

Read the checklist to see a number of practical steps employers can take.

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Posted Under: EBI

Post By Barry Nixon (262 Posts)

W. Barry Nixon is the COO, the leading background screening information portal and online worldwide directory of professional background screening firms and Suppliers to the background screening industry. He co-authored the landmark book, Background Screening & Investigations: Managing Hiring Risk from the HR and Security Perspective. He also is the publisher of award winning newsletters, The Background Buzz and The Global Background Screener, and the author of the Background Checks column in PI Magazine.

In addition, Barry is a past recipient of the elite ‘Top 25 Influential People in Security’ by Security Magazine and past Co-Chair, International Committee for the National Association for Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS). He currently serves as a Global Ambassador for NAPBS.

You can contact Barry at 1-949-770-5264 or online at