Q: Can my employer subject me to random drug screenings 6 month to a year, after completing a rehab for alcohol successfuly
I feel as if is is excessive, and a bit like they are picking me - I was tested for months while going to IOT - had to take another screening prior to getting back to work, to which I passed them all. Now they want me to sign a document that states I can be randomly drug tested over the next 6 months to a year. I have not given them any reason to test me other than my alcohol issue that I have been treated for. The companies policy was written in Alabama - however I am in the California branch in San Diego, no one else in the company has to submit "random" drug screenings. I just want to make sure what they are asking me to do is lawful. I am a mechanic /engineer for the ship repair industry.
You don't state the type of work you do, or what your job entails, which might have a material bearing on whether your employer can impose this condition on your right to continued employment. In all likelihood, it is probably legal for the employer to impose such a condition on your right to remain continually employed.
It is well documented that there is high recidivism rate among alcohol abusers/ alcoholics, and employers have a right to make sure that employees, at least in several categories of employment, stay sober on the job. For example, if you are a driver for a company, your employer can definitely impose such a condition on your right to continued employment. There are many other categories of employment which might justify this kind of condition. The question is usually whether the condition is reasonable under the circumstances.
Maya L. Serkova agrees with this answer
1 user found this answer helpful
A: You do describe your position as a mechanic/ engineer for the ship repair industry. This is the kind of technical work that could be very negatively affected if the employee was under the influence of drugs with the potential for serious personal injury/property damage ramifications. Your situation runs the line between protecting the public and your rights to be free from discrimination due to a physical/ mental disability resulting in drug dependency. You are entitled to be free from UNLAWFUL harassment/ discrimination for that. So the idea of being subject to random testing for 6 months is probably not too invasive of your personal rights to become unlawful harassment/discrimination, however, the real proof is how they administer the policy. If truly random, you could be looking at maybe twice a month? maybe even once a week but if you are being tested every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, this is no longer random and could be construed to be punitive for having a history of being physically/ mentally disabled. Best of luck.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.