Friday, June 26, 2009

Massachusetts Public Employees Facing Random Drug Testing

Massachusetts public employees including the police and firefighters unions could be headed towards random drug testing if the state approves a newly proposed screening bill. Representative Christopher Donelan sponsored the bill that would call for mandatory drug and alcohol tests for public safety employees. Boston Mayor, Bob Menino exclaimed "The people of Boston, as well as the citizens of the entire commonwealth, have a right to know that all reasonable measures are being taken to ensure that our public safety work force is not impaired by alcohol or drugs." President of the Western Massachusetts Police Association, Robert Frydryk stated that "Drug testing itself isn't a bad idea." Bob McCarthy of the Professional Firefighters of Massachusetts would like to see the drug testing worked out through a collective s bargaining agreement.

When it comes to quality drug testing solutions, hiring managers and risk mitigation professionals should solely rely on a professional drug testing firm like Mobile Medical Corporation (MMC). MMC can help you with all of your substance abuse testing needs. MMC works closely with all clients to establish focused policies and testing procedures that comply with both the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Non-Federal testing programs.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Utah Debates Drug Testing for Public Assistance

Utah has begun to follow the path that so many other states have traveled earlier this year. The path leads to drug testing for public assistance. Utah Senator Dennis Stowell had asked that the issue be studied carefully and Rep. Christopher Herrod said "If someone's on drugs, we shouldn't be giving them money," he said. "There's nowhere in the Constitution that says, 'You have a right to get welfare."

At the center of the debate is cost and legality. An analyst for Community Action Partnership of Utah stated that "The cost to test all Utah’s families that receive 'Temporary Assistance for Needy Families' would be high." The analyst added, "That testing all welfare recipients just once would cost about $255,000 and a lawsuit against the state would likely cost more than $1 million."

Further discussion and analysis is planned in the upcoming months to decide whether to study the issue further, table the issue or wait until other states act upon the topic and set a strong precedent for Utah to follow.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Mobile Medical Corporation Recertifies with WBENC

The Women's Business Enterprise Council of PA-DE-sNJ has recently granted re-certification to Pittsburgh based Mobile Medical Corporation (MMC). The Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), founded in 1997, is the nation's leading advocate of women-owned businesses as suppliers to America's corporations. It also is the largest third-party certifier of businesses owned and operated by women in the United States. WBENC works to foster diversity in the world of commerce with programs and policies designed to expand opportunities and eliminate barriers in the marketplace for women business owners. WBENC works with representatives of corporations to encourage the utilization and expansion of supplier/vendor diversity programs.

Legal Notes: Graham County, N.C. Board of Education Random Drug Testing

A recent decision by a North Carolina Court of Appeals recently ruled that the Graham County Board of Education in N.C. violated its employee’s rights by implementing a policy mandating the random, suspicionless drug and alcohol testing of all Board employees.

In 2006, all Board employees were subject to an Alcohol and Drug-Free Workplace Policy which required all job applicants to pass an alcohol or drug test as a condition of employment. It required all employees to submit to an alcohol or other drug test upon a supervisor's reasonable cause to believe that the employee was using alcohol or illegal drugs, or abusing prescription drugs, in the workplace.

Any employee who was placed on the approved list to drive school system vehicles needed to submit to “random drug tests.” Additionally, the policy mandated the suspension of any employee who, in a supervisor's opinion, was impaired by alcohol or drugs in the workplace.

The Board of Education enacted a new testing policy at the end of 2006 requiring all employees to submit to random, suspicionless testing. A group of employees sued the Board of Education 5 months later claiming a violation of their rights.

Originally the trial court ruled for the school board, but later the court reversed the decision in favor of the school employees on the grounds that it violated the state Constitution's ban on unreasonable searches.

Drinking on the Job in Peru...Perfectly Legal!

This past winter a Peruvian court ruled that fired worker; Pablo Cayo should be given back his old janitorial job. Mr. Cayo was originally dismissed from his city job for being intoxicated while at work. Most responsible companies would dismiss an employee for drinking or being drunk at the workplace and would deduce that it is not sound practice to employee intoxicated workers as they pose a risk to the welfare of other employees as well as the general public.

Peru's judicial system, The Constitutional Tribunal has a different take. The Tribunal reversed the firing decision and ruled that workers cannot be fired for being drunk on the job! Tribunal Judge Fernando Calle stated that "The firing was excessive because even though Cayo was drunk, he did not offend or hurt anybody."

Employers and safety officials in Peru have denounced the ruling. Celso Becerra, the administrative chief of Chorrillos, a suburb of Lima, Peru exclaimed "We've fired four workers for showing up drunk, and two of them were drivers," he said. "How can we allow a drunk to work who might run somebody over?"

Monday, June 15, 2009

International Substance Abuse Testing Snapshot - Ireland

Ireland's Railway Safety Commission (RSC) is considering introducing random substance abuse and alcohol testing for rail workers. The commission already conducts substance abuse and alcohol tests on current rail workers but believes that unannounced tests could further increase safety standards. In 2007 and 2008 random tests were carried out on 156 Irish Rail (Iarnr√≥d Eireann) workers and only two tested positive for illegal substances. According to the Irish Sunday Business Post Online - In 26 tests on workers after an ‘‘incident’’, two tested positive for drugs; in another two situations where ‘‘for cause’’ testing was considered necessary, both were positive.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Mobile Medical Corporation - Oral Saliva Drug Testing Quick Facts

Oral saliva drug testing is a method that uses a donor’s saliva to detect drug metabolites. Oral saliva testing is a rather new method and has only been active within the industry for about 5 years.

The oral saliva method of drug testing uses a swab collector to sample the saliva in a donor’s mouth. The swap is placed between the lower cheek and gum of the donor for several minutes and once saturated with saliva the swab is immediately transferred to a collection vial and sent to a SAMSHA certified lab for analysis.

Contact Mobile Medical Corporation (MMC) today for further information about Oral Saliva Drug Testing. MMC is a premier provider of random drug testing solutions and offers affordable and compliant drug testing campaigns. MMC adheres to all Department of Transportation (DOT), Federal and Non-Federal testing guidelines.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Court Upholds Direct Observation Drug Testing for Transporation Industry

On May 15, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled against BNSF Railway Co. and some transportation unions that had petitioned the court to review the rule modified to prevent cheating. A recent article in e-Trucker reported that a federal appeals court upheld the 2008 U.S. Department of Transportation rule requiring direct observation of transportation workers during drug testing.

When it comes to quality drug testing solutions, hiring managers and risk mitigation professionals should solely rely on a professional drug testing firm like Mobile Medical Corporation (MMC). MMC can help you with all of your substance abuse testing needs. MMC works closely with all clients to establish focused policies and testing procedures that comply with both the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Non-Federal testing programs.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Germany Claims Red Bull Cola Closer to Narcotic than Foodstuff

Six states in Germany recently removed the new Red Bull Cola from it's supermarket shelves because a sample of the product tested positive for a banned substance. The test found that there was a trace amount of cocaine, approximately 0.4 micrograms, in the cola. The BBC article claimed that "The illegal cocaine alkaloid - one of 10 found in coca and representing only 0.8% of the plant's chemical make-up - is chemically removed before use, as mandated by international anti-narcotics agencies."

Fritz Soergel, the head of the Institute for Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Research in Nuremberg, Bavaria, stated that "There is no scientific basis for this ban on Red Bull Cola because the levels of cocaine found are so small," Soergel added "And it's not even cocaine itself. According to the tests we carried out, it's a non-active degradation product with no effect on the body. If you start examining lots of other drinks and food so carefully, you'd find a lot of surprising things."