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Case 66 - Worker concerned that employer is to introduce random drugs/drink testing on health and safety grounds

Issue

An employee from an engineering company has expressed a concern that his employer is to introduce random drugs/drink testing on the grounds of health and safety.

Panel decision

Although there are no specific health and safety laws which stipulate the need for drug and alcohol testing an employer may decide to introduce such testing in workplaces where there is a real risk – eg working at height or operating machinery. The employer should be prepared to explain the reasons for introduction of the policy via consultation with the workforce.

2012-09-28