More Workers Testing Positive for Drugs

The National Safety Council just sent out an article about drugs in the work place. It states that for the first time in the last 10 years, the percentage of positive drug tests have increased. Scientists have reviewed over 8 million drug tests from urine, saliva, and hair. The results show an overall increase in identified drug use of 3.5% between 2012 & 2013.

Marijuana use has risen as well. Over 6% in the overall workforce.  It’s even higher, over 20% in states that have legalized recreational marijuana use.

What does that mean for the safety professional? Most construction jobs have transient workers. These workers travel from state to state and job to job. Some of these workers might not be able to hold a regular job and have a background in drugs. In the workplace, drug testing is common. Even if a worker passes a drug screen, there is still a large percentage of workers that will find their way back to drugs.

With known drug use on the rise, we must be aware of the possibility of drug use by our employees. We also can not forget about supervisors and management. Keep a watchful eye on all of your workers and be viligant to maintain a drug free workplace.

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