The Straight Dope

Go Back   Straight Dope Message Board > Main > Mundane Pointless Stuff I Must Share (MPSIMS)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #101  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:03 PM
jsgoddess jsgoddess is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by aNewLeaf View Post
You completely missed my point- there's no difference in the desire to consume coffee or pot.

Yes, you can be fired for using other drugs, at least in this state.
But nobody is going around testing people for alcohol, which certainly causes more absenteeism and other issues than MJ.
Alcohol is tested for at the same time as the other drugs, in my experience.
Reply With Quote
Advertisements  
  #102  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:06 PM
Procrustus Procrustus is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Pacific NW.
Posts: 4,118
I once had a boss that used to say "I'd never hire anyone who could pass a drug test."

Now that I'm an employer, I must say, I really don't care what my employees do at home. No one has offered me lower insurance rates for testing, and I wouldn't do it anyway. Like I said up thread, I'm fortunate enough to be able to refuse employment with companies that test. I know others might not have that option. I use marijuana 3 or 4 times a year, so I really don't have a reason to complain if my employees do also.
Reply With Quote
  #103  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:07 PM
Dallas Jones Dallas Jones is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by aNewLeaf View Post
My problem with most drug testing is the arbitrary nature of it all.
You can use alcohol, and tobacco, and caffeine, all of which are dangerous and kill many, many people each year.
But because current drug law has no basis in fact, less dangerous drugs are strictly forbidden.
No, you really can't use tobacco anymore either if you are looking for employment in certain health care companies.

And I am not talking about a Smoke Free Workplace policy, which is becoming common, I am talking about NO tobacco use at all, even at home.

If you answer 'yes' to the tobacco use questions on your job application, the application goes to further. And they are including tobacco screening in the pre-employment testing. Since smokers are not a protected class companies are allowed to discriminate in their hiring practices.

http://www.workforce.com/articles/ni...care-companies

This is just one article, I can find more if needed. Like these:

http://www.mercymemorial.org/Main/NicotineFreeFAQ.aspx

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/11/us...pagewanted=all


It is becoming more common in hospitals and health care businesses. It is supposed to be about practicing what you preach but coincidentally it saves these companies money on health care costs too.

In the US employers can install many conditions on employment, and unless you are part of a legally protected class, it's just fine.
Reply With Quote
  #104  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:11 PM
aNewLeaf aNewLeaf is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Well, I feel for tobacco users- that's what pot smokers have been facing for decades.
I'm gratified to see some parity in how things are handled, even it's more restrictions rather than more freedoms.
But still, as it stands now, nearly all tobacco smokers can work without problem in their chosen fields.

(There likely is a job out there that tests for alcohol- no need to google it. It's the tiny rare exception.)

Quote:
In the US employers can install many conditions on employment, and unless you are part of a legally protected class, it's just fine.
Reply With Quote
Varies by state, some are more restrictive. Colorado isn't- employers can pretty much do what they want here.

Last edited by aNewLeaf; 08-08-2013 at 01:12 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #105  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:14 PM
aNewLeaf aNewLeaf is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsgoddess View Post
Alcohol is tested for at the same time as the other drugs, in my experience.
I've never personally seen one like that. All the testing I've been subject to was the standard 5-drug panel.

Last edited by aNewLeaf; 08-08-2013 at 01:14 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #106  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:22 PM
Smapti Smapti is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Olympia, WA
Posts: 4,445
Quote:
Originally Posted by aNewLeaf View Post
Yes, you can be fired for using other drugs, at least in this state.
But nobody is going around testing people for alcohol, which certainly causes more absenteeism and other issues than MJ.
The company I work for tests for alcohol.
Reply With Quote
  #107  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:23 PM
jsgoddess jsgoddess is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by aNewLeaf View Post
I've never personally seen one like that. All the testing I've been subject to was the standard 5-drug panel.
The one at my workplace tested for both, using the DOT guidelines for alcohol (which I think is .04).
Reply With Quote
  #108  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:26 PM
kayaker kayaker is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Western Pennsylvania
Posts: 13,010
I know a nurse who was tested for alcohol pre-employment. She was told that if she drank the night before, she would test negative. Seems they've had people show up at 9 a.m. over .08!
Reply With Quote
  #109  
Old 08-08-2013, 01:28 PM
jsgoddess jsgoddess is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
If anyone is interested, this gives some details on what I was talking about upthread, where Ohio essentially penalizes workplaces that do not do drug testing: https://www.ohiobwc.com/employer/pro...escription.asp
Reply With Quote
  #110  
Old 08-08-2013, 03:38 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Quote:
Originally Posted by aNewLeaf View Post
You completely missed my point- there's no difference in the desire to consume coffee or pot.
I understand your attempt at the analogy. The desire to do the drug is similar. With respect to the effects of the drug, pot probably has a milder effect than alcohol, a larger effect than caffeine. The fact that it is legal to consume alcohol on your own time but not legal to consume pot on your own time is part of the reason why any pot use is grounds for dismissal while one can drink off hours and remain employed.

Quote:
Yes, you can be fired for using other drugs, at least in this state.
But nobody is going around testing people for alcohol, which certainly causes more absenteeism and other issues than MJ.
My company tests for alcohol as well as the other drugs when screening. Certainly being impaired at work is a more legitimate issue for the employer, regardless of the kind of work. Sometimes the effects of the drugs in question are not considered "impairment" for some kinds of employment. Does not change their federal legality.

It does have the effect that people who used to be able to get a beer with lunch now can't risk it. Have to save the beer for happy hour. There can be the occassional office party that has a keg, but those are reserved for end of the day events, often on Friday.

You do have a legitimate point that alcohol test results tie directly to impairment - blood alcohol level is related to how impaired you are at the time, and goes down as the body processes it out of the system, while pot screening can detect prior usage that does not reflect current status, whether you are impaired or not. The legality of pot is part of the reason this difference in approach is considered more acceptable. Also, America's polarism with respect to the acceptability of pot use.

Certainly one can get in trouble for other things. I know a guy fired supposedly because of use of prescription medication that was from his wife. He was in the process of being swapped from subcontractor to main contractor, and the pre-employement screening turned up a hit on pain meds. He had back problems, and used meds in the medicine cabinet that his wife had left over from some prior incident. He was terminated. (At least that's the story he told.)


Quote:
People who use marijuana (in their own time) aren't any more likely to cause problems than anyone else.
More likely, certainly not. They're probably not as likely as someone abusing pain meds, certainly not as likely as someone abusing heroin or meth. They are probably similar to alcohol use, which is to say many people can consume some and continue with life as normal and be straight for work. Some people have problems and become consumed by their drug use.
Reply With Quote
  #111  
Old 08-08-2013, 06:05 PM
mandala mandala is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
OK now this may be a stupid question, but what is the status of nootropics - are they considered 'soft' drugs? They can enhance mental and cognitive performance (some of them anyway), some can give you a mild high but can have weird effects on the brain as well.

What is the criteria that companies use to determine the drugs they do not like? Does smoking pot make the user more violent, deranged or aggressive? I can understand hard drugs like cocaine and heroine are severely damaging, but there are OTCs that can do damage too. What about someone pumped up on testosterone supplements and caffeine?
Reply With Quote
  #112  
Old 08-08-2013, 08:56 PM
mikewil mikewil is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaffan View Post
Is there any other country in the world that tests run-of-the-mill employees for drugs?

I mean really, what employees do on their own time is their own business.

Puritanical USA at its finest.
It is very common in Australia, almost universal in the mining industry
Reply With Quote
  #113  
Old 08-08-2013, 09:01 PM
JFLuvly JFLuvly is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Here's what pisses me off about drug testing... If I smoke a joint at night to control anxiety and get a good nights sleep, I am not eligible for employment. If I have a prescription for Ativan , not only am I eligible for work, but I can pop them all day while I am working. If I am hungover at work after drinking with the boys the night before, that's fine, but if I smoked a joint last week on my day off...no job for you.

I play a lot of sports with paramedics and jail guards and smoke with them. They don't have to worry about it because of their union policy of no drug testing. One way or the other I don't care because I don't see the harm in marijuana use, but it seems a little silly that I can't be a janitor or hand out small tools from a cage and use marijuana in my off time but a paramedic can.
Reply With Quote
  #114  
Old 08-08-2013, 09:33 PM
Leaffan Leaffan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Ottawa Valley, eh.
Posts: 15,180
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikewil View Post
It is very common in Australia, almost universal in the mining industry
Well, of course there's a bit of a difference between mining jobs and cubicle jobs. But still, it perplexes me.
Reply With Quote
  #115  
Old 08-08-2013, 09:52 PM
Aspidistra Aspidistra is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 2,931
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaffan View Post
Well, of course there's a bit of a difference between mining jobs and cubicle jobs. But still, it perplexes me.
I'm not aware of any drug testing in Oz workplaces. But then, I don't live in a mining town.

Anywhere other than the mining industry where it's common?

Last edited by Aspidistra; 08-08-2013 at 09:54 PM.. Reason: Oh, and sports of course. But that's a different issue - and a different set of drugs
Reply With Quote
  #116  
Old 08-08-2013, 09:59 PM
GameHat GameHat is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by aNewLeaf View Post
I've never personally seen one like that. All the testing I've been subject to was the standard 5-drug panel.
The places I've worked it's been a urine test for the 5 or whatever drugs, then a breathalyzer for alcohol.
Reply With Quote
  #117  
Old 08-08-2013, 10:09 PM
Leaffan Leaffan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Ottawa Valley, eh.
Posts: 15,180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aspidistra View Post
I'm not aware of any drug testing in Oz workplaces. But then, I don't live in a mining town.

Anywhere other than the mining industry where it's common?
If you work all day on the blue sky mine
(There'll be food on the table tonight)
Reply With Quote
  #118  
Old 08-08-2013, 10:16 PM
Dangerosa Dangerosa is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaffan View Post
Is there any other country in the world that tests run-of-the-mill employees for drugs?

I mean really, what employees do on their own time is their own business.

Puritanical USA at its finest.
I'm not sure how common it is in the U.S. - outside of certain industries and jobs where they screen everyone as a gate (Home Depot drug tests all applicants). I didn't have to drug test for my last job, nor did my husband - I did for the job before that one, but during my employment there they stopped - and they only did it as part of the pre-employment screening.
Reply With Quote
  #119  
Old 08-09-2013, 02:55 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Sorry, I just have to get this out.
SPOILER:
MOTHERFUCKER I JUST DELETED MY POST!!!


Take 2:

Quote:
Originally Posted by mandala View Post
OK now this may be a stupid question, but what is the status of nootropics - are they considered 'soft' drugs? ...

What is the criteria that companies use to determine the drugs they do not like? Does smoking pot make the user more violent, deranged or aggressive? I can understand hard drugs like cocaine and heroine are severely damaging, but there are OTCs that can do damage too. What about someone pumped up on testosterone supplements and caffeine?
Most companies are relying on the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 to define what they screen for.

Quote:
The Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 requires some Federal contractors and all Federal grantees to agree that they will provide drug-free workplaces as a precondition of receiving a contract or grant from a Federal agency.
Although all covered contractors and grantees must maintain a drug-free workplace, the specific components necessary to meet the requirements of the Act vary based on whether the contractor or grantee is an individual or an organization. The requirements for organizations are more extensive, because organizations have to take comprehensive, programmatic steps to achieve a workplace free of drugs.

Requirements for Individuals
Any individual who receives a contract or grant from the Federal government, regardless of dollar value, must agree not to engage in the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession or use of a controlled substance in the performance of this contract/grant.
The Act does not list specific drugs. It says "controlled substances", which includes pot, because pot is illegal at the federal level, even though some states are carving out state-level legalities. It also includes cocaine, methamphetamines, barbituates, and opiates. Prescription drugs are covered as well, though typically they are looking for versions of the above drug classes.

Quote:
Are alcohol and nonprescription drug abuse covered under the Act?
While employers may include these subjects in their programs at their own discretion, the Act does not require their inclusion.
Alcohol is often tested because it causes impairment of judgement and abilities, and people are sensitized to it via drunk driving campaigns, etc. Legally, if a substance causes impairment, the company can be liable if they knowingly allow an impaired employee to do a job and someone is injured.

If nootropics are non-controlled substances, legal to own and take, then they are not covered by this Act, and will not likely be part of a list of drugs that are screened for by drug testing. However, if these substances cause behavioral mental state changes, one can still be subject to discliplinary and even legal action for your behavior, regardless of the legality of the substance. If someone gets "pumped up" on testosterone and caffeine and goes around yelling at people or getting abusive, other company policies may come into effect, including arrest for assault.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JFLuvly View Post
Here's what pisses me off about drug testing... If I smoke a joint at night to control anxiety and get a good nights sleep, I am not eligible for employment. If I have a prescription for Ativan , not only am I eligible for work, but I can pop them all day while I am working. If I am hungover at work after drinking with the boys the night before, that's fine, but if I smoked a joint last week on my day off...no job for you.
The thing is, pot is still federally illegal, even if it is legal for the state or legally covered by state prescription laws. That is an issue to take up with federal legislators about the criminality of pot.

If you take an Ativan without prescription and it is discovered by testing, you can also be fired. Because Ativan is a controlled substance, you might also be subject to legal prosecution. That would be the same situation as smoking pot - it is illegal use and you test positive.

Quote:
I play a lot of sports with paramedics and jail guards and smoke with them. They don't have to worry about it because of their union policy of no drug testing. One way or the other I don't care because I don't see the harm in marijuana use, but it seems a little silly that I can't be a janitor or hand out small tools from a cage and use marijuana in my off time but a paramedic can.
That is interesting. I guess you should study and become a paramedic.

Ultimately, attitudes towards marijuana in this country are slowly shifting away from criminalization. Right now, there is a strong dichotomy of views, and so federal laws are still strict. Ultimately, what needs to happen is enough of an attitude shift in this country that pot use becomes legal, something like alcohol use.

If that were to happen, companies would still be allowed to screen for pot use as part of employment. However, the impetus to do so would be weakened. Alcohol blood tests can determine how you were affected at the time*, something that marijuana testing currently does not screen. Shifting attitudes with respect to marijuana use would shift the need to find a way to screen for pot impairment rather than any past use. Primarily, that would be driven by law enforcement, related to motor vehicle operation. It would also carry over to workplace screening.

-----
*There may be some variability in the effects of blood alcohol level, but it is much more closely tied to current intoxication than anything associated with pot currently is. It is useful enough for use in screening motor vehicle operation.
Reply With Quote
  #120  
Old 08-09-2013, 03:00 PM
aNewLeaf aNewLeaf is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Quote:
That is an issue to take up with federal legislators about the criminality of pot.
Oh hell yes.
Reply With Quote
  #121  
Old 08-09-2013, 03:27 PM
shiftless shiftless is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Virginia
Posts: 3,776
Some places have good reason to test, for security personal or heavy equipment operators for example, but I've never understood the need for those of us who sit at a desk all day. Either we do our work corectly or not. So, I've always assumed that companies test for drugs so they can use it as an excuse to fire people they don't want or to cover their asses in the case accidents. "Yes, our employee did drop a piano from ten stories up, crushing poor Mrs Hollingsworth and her toy poodle, but we have proof that he used pot within the last 30 days so it's his fault.
Reply With Quote
  #122  
Old 08-09-2013, 05:35 PM
JFLuvly JFLuvly is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Irishman,

I have not posted in a while and I should have mentioned that I am in Canada and I am a legally prescribed marijuana user. Even-though I am a federally licensed user, I still can't get past the pre-screen and to me that seems discriminating. I'll add that my marijuana use does not seem to have any effect on me the day after, if anything I am more aware of what is going on around me because as I said earlier I sleep much better at night while using it. That being said I don't think I should be automatically disqualified for safety sensitive jobs such as driving any more than an Ativan patient.
As far as I know there are saliva tests available which indicate marijuana use within two hours or so before the test is administered, although I have no idea as to the accuracy.
Reply With Quote
  #123  
Old 08-09-2013, 08:22 PM
KaylaLynn KaylaLynn is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by Machine Elf View Post
Maybe they're unnecessary quotes.
OMG! That is a really funny blog!
Reply With Quote
  #124  
Old 08-09-2013, 08:35 PM
Leaper Leaper is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: In my own little world...
Posts: 8,941
That blog makes me angry.
Reply With Quote
  #125  
Old 08-09-2013, 08:45 PM
Leaffan Leaffan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Ottawa Valley, eh.
Posts: 15,180
Quote:
Originally Posted by KaylaLynn View Post
OMG! That is a really funny blog!
Wow. That is "certainly" a weird "blog" about "superfluous" quotes. Almost as funny as "engrish.com."
Reply With Quote
  #126  
Old 08-09-2013, 09:32 PM
alphaboi867 alphaboi867 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: the Keystone State
Posts: 11,022
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaffan View Post
Is there any other country in the world that tests run-of-the-mill employees for drugs?

I mean really, what employees do on their own time is their own business.

Puritanical USA at its finest.
I imagine Singapore is even worse.
__________________
No Gods, No Masters
Reply With Quote
  #127  
Old 08-09-2013, 10:02 PM
SweetLucy SweetLucy is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Yeah, the War on Drugs has been a smashing success

I've never used any illegal drugs and have no desire to, but I think it should be a choice and not a crime
Reply With Quote
  #128  
Old 08-09-2013, 10:25 PM
Leaffan Leaffan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Ottawa Valley, eh.
Posts: 15,180
Quote:
Originally Posted by alphaboi867 View Post
I imagine Singapore is even worse.
Man. I once had to transfer planes through Singapore. I was scared as hell just from reading the signs in the airport. Death penalty for importation, etc.
Reply With Quote
  #129  
Old 08-10-2013, 09:28 AM
Bozuit Bozuit is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: London, UK
Posts: 1,612
Quote:
Originally Posted by Northern Piper View Post
I would say it's very libertarian. The employer has complete liberty to make random drug tests part of the job requirements, with an absolute right to dismiss if there's a positive result.

The employee has complete liberty to take the job or not, depending whether the employee is okay with those job conditions.

The government stays out of the employment relationship on this issue and does not attempt to regulate it.

Sounds pretty libertarian to me.
You make a good point. I think what I meant was that the culture as a whole that makes drug-testing so prevalent and acceptable doesn't seem very libertarian. I suppose there's libertarianism where you keep your nose out of other people's personal stuff, and libertarianism where you take the attitude that you're welcome to use the power you have over people to stick your nose into their personal stuff.

Maybe I was just baked.
Reply With Quote
  #130  
Old 08-10-2013, 03:39 PM
Bouncer Bouncer is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrumBum View Post
I have never quite understood the rationale for testing office workers for drugs like pot. Pilots, rig workers, and the like I can understand but tossing an employee for smoking pot at home last weekend seems a tad excessive. They do not have testing here, either because they trust us or the laws here do not permit it. In the US offices, they test in the states that permit it.
I would say it's for two reasons.

One, they want to avoid lawsuits and so it's a blanket policy. No one can claim to be singled out by color, religion, sex etc if it affects everyone across the board. Nor do they want to end up in front of the department of labor explaining why *this* position requires testing but *that* position doesn't for every possible position within the company.

Two, it's an issue of trust. In that sense that you are (at some point) told before being hired that you will be subject to screening (usually either in the ad for the job or application process). If you do not reveal usage prior to hiring, or do not reveal usage during employment, you are *knowingly* lying to the company/organization about consumption of these drugs. And that goes to trust. If you're willing to lie about pot usage, you might also lie about heroin usage. Or theft. Or you might be subject to blackmail if you work with proprietary data or secured systems.

Regards,
-Bouncer-
Reply With Quote
  #131  
Old 08-12-2013, 03:01 PM
handsomeharry handsomeharry is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by GameHat View Post
Sigh. You wish it would be over something more serious.
It was over something more serious: her inability to keep her mouth shut. She has learned 2 valuable lessons, hopefully. 1. Keep her mouth shut and 2. The company enforces it's code, whatever it is.

Glad to hear that she won't starve.

Also, the correct answer to 'have you ever been fired for cause?' is "No."
Reply With Quote
  #132  
Old 08-12-2013, 04:30 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Quote:
Originally Posted by KaylaLynn View Post
OMG! That is a really funny blog!
I think you mean, That is a "really funny" blog!

Quote:
Originally Posted by handsomeharry View Post
Also, the correct answer to 'have you ever been fired for cause?' is "No."
That would be factually incorrect. Not sure what her termination papers would reflect.

Last edited by Irishman; 08-12-2013 at 04:32 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #133  
Old 08-12-2013, 04:31 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
nevermind - server error made me think it didn't go through

Last edited by Irishman; 08-12-2013 at 04:31 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #134  
Old 08-12-2013, 07:27 PM
the_diego the_diego is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick View Post
But picture this. Let's suppose I hire a new tech and I don't drug test him. Now let's further suppose that on his first day he is in an auto accident that is his fault and he is higher than a kite.
With no pre-employment drug screen the injured party's lawyer is going to make me and my dealership look like the largest bunch of idiots that ever twisted a wrench. The lack of a drug screen could also add maybe an extra zero to the settlement.
I believe that our insurance company requires a drug screen before employment. FTR we also do a background check for criminal matters. I have had people I could not hire due to background checks.
Gotcha. But here's the problem: a drug test can be positive and yet the employee is neither culpable nor does he pose a risk to the organization. I enter a room in a party and I see people sniffing crack. I leave but the chemical is already in my system. What's the crime and the risk to my company?
Reply With Quote
  #135  
Old 08-12-2013, 07:32 PM
jsgoddess jsgoddess is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_diego View Post
Gotcha. But here's the problem: a drug test can be positive and yet the employee is neither culpable nor does he pose a risk to the organization. I enter a room in a party and I see people sniffing crack. I leave but the chemical is already in my system. What's the crime and the risk to my company?
As far as I know, all drug tests have a threshold. Below that threshold, you may have a little bit of a drug in your system, but not enough to test positive. The standard hypothetical of hanging out in a room with pot smokers, or eating a poppy seed muffin are covered by this.
Reply With Quote
  #136  
Old 08-14-2013, 06:49 PM
handsomeharry handsomeharry is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by aNewLeaf View Post
Imagine an employer telling you not to use coffee. Or any caffeine.
Not just at work- anywhere, ever. In your own home, on your day off, you are forbidden to consume coffee.
Can you imagine that a slip in discipline could be possible, and can you imagine yourself enjoying a cappuchino in that situation?
I can. And, I can also imagine losing my job if I were to shoot my mouth off about it.
Reply With Quote
  #137  
Old 08-16-2013, 12:28 AM
Magiver Magiver is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
I knew someone who was hit in the company parking lot by another employee and the policy was that both people submitted to the test. 20+ years in a good paying job out the window over smoking pot. Sad. The policies AFAIK started in the transportation business to screen out pilots and truckers who caused an accident.

I can understand it when applied to accidents having nothing to do with whether it's legal or not. If you're drunk or high then you shouldn't be operating equipment. I would think the woman in question had some kind of legal foot to stand on in this regard.
Reply With Quote
  #138  
Old 08-22-2013, 09:42 PM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: The Glitter Palace
Posts: 16,661
Just came across a decision of the Supreme Court of Canada from June, which held that the employer cannot unilaterally impose random alcohol tests in the workplace; must demonstrate a clear need for such tests.

Workplace Alcohol Testing: Canada's Supreme Court Rejects Mandatory, Random Checks

Quote:
In 15 years before the policy was imposed, there were only eight instances in which a worker was found to be under the influence of alcohol and none involved an accident or injury.

In the 22 months the policy was in effect, no one tested positive.
...

"In the end, the expected safety gains to the employer in this case were found by the board to range 'from uncertain ... to minimal at best' while the impact on employee privacy was found to be much more severe," Justice Rosalie Abella wrote for the majority.

"Consequently, the board concluded that the employer had not demonstrated the requisite problems with dangerousness or increased safety concerns such as workplace alcohol use that would justify universal random testing.

"Random alcohol testing was therefore held to be an unreasonable exercise of management rights under the collective agreement. I agree."
Reply With Quote
  #139  
Old 08-22-2013, 10:49 PM
Una Persson Una Persson is offline
Straight Dope Science Advisory Board
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: On the dance floor.
Posts: 14,785
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaffan View Post
Well, of course there's a bit of a difference between mining jobs and cubicle jobs. But still, it perplexes me.
Several people have tried to say that cubicle/office workers being tested doesn't make sense, but I can think of many exceptions. I'm one; I'm a Licensed Professional Engineer and as such I can approve designs and reports which could directly impact public safety. I can be fired for a single positive test unless a re-test comes up negative.

Everyone at my company knows it and we all signed a form saying we knew it. And contrary to an earlier posting, yes it is legal for my company to deny people medical marijuana use while being employed. It's been tested in court.

I have no reaction one way or the other. I'm in favor of controlled legalization, but have never, not even once, tried any illegal drug. And I'm not sacrificing a 6-figure career and a comfy office at a place I sincerely love to work, just so I can eat a pot brownie and giggle a lot. If I had an actual medical need, I'd feel differently.
Reply With Quote
  #140  
Old 08-23-2013, 01:48 PM
JFLuvly JFLuvly is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Quote:
And contrary to an earlier posting, yes it is legal for my company to deny people medical marijuana use while being employed. It's been tested in court.
I would be very interested seeing the cite for that.

Last edited by JFLuvly; 08-23-2013 at 01:52 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #141  
Old 08-23-2013, 01:51 PM
JFLuvly JFLuvly is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Quote:
Several people have tried to say that cubicle/office workers being tested doesn't make sense, but I can think of many exceptions. I'm one; I'm a Licensed Professional Engineer and as such I can approve designs and reports which could directly impact public safety.
You do realize that marijuana may in fact possibly make you better at your job, especially in the design end.
Reply With Quote
  #142  
Old 08-23-2013, 02:13 PM
RTFirefly RTFirefly is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Maryland
Posts: 26,014
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fear Itself View Post
Really. In many states, unless you have an employment contract that says otherwise, you are an "at will" employee that can be fired for any reason (except federally protected class reasons such as as race, gender, disability, etc.), or no reason at all. Your employer can require all sorts of tests, refusing which can be grounds for dismissal. You can be fired for testing positive for caffeine, if your company so desires. You have no right to a job.
Which you'd think would eliminate the necessity of drug tests. If you think one of your workers is falling down on the job, however you care to define that (or even if you don't care to define it at all), you can fire them, end of story. Doesn't matter if you think it might be drug-related or not.
Reply With Quote
  #143  
Old 08-23-2013, 03:20 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Quote:
Originally Posted by JFLuvly View Post
You do realize that marijuana may in fact possibly make you better at your job, especially in the design end.
No. Whether or not creativity is enhanced by marijuana, it is known to have the effect on attention to detail. Una's job has the very real aspect that the designs have to be technically accurate. The numbers have to actually crunch. The results have to be technically sound. And she's putting her name and professional reputation and personal liability on the line by certifying those designs, plus the liability of her employers. That is the legal situation where being mentally impaired is a serious problem.
Reply With Quote
  #144  
Old 08-23-2013, 06:25 PM
JFLuvly JFLuvly is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Quote:
it is known to have the effect on attention to detail
Do you mean a negative effect? if so I would like to see a cite. I know plenty of dope smoking professionals, from musicians to artists to mechanical designers who find there attention to detail is definitely enhanced while under the influence. Two of the best students in my electronics engineering class were huge potheads and another claims to have figured out transistors during his first year while high.

It was only a few years ago that I was in the "marijuana is bad camp", and I am 47 now, until I was faced with the decision on whether or not to fill my body with anti-anxiety and anti-depression medications or try marijuana. I choose, after a shit load of research and a personal anecdote from my wife, (she was the same way, weed is bad, until the head of the pain clinic in our province recommended that she try marijuana as a possible alternative to pain relief) to try the marijuana route. It has worked incredibly well for me and I have come to the conclusion that everything I was taught in school was a lie. No addiction, no gateway, no lazy stoner, no homicidal maniac nothing of the sort.
Reply With Quote
  #145  
Old 08-23-2013, 06:52 PM
kayaker kayaker is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Western Pennsylvania
Posts: 13,010
Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
No. Whether or not creativity is enhanced by marijuana,
Whether or not? My gf is in advertising. If marijuana disappeared tomorrow, her company would be fucked.
Reply With Quote
  #146  
Old 08-23-2013, 07:16 PM
Voyager Voyager is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Deep Space
Posts: 33,433
Quote:
Originally Posted by kayaker View Post
Whether or not? My gf is in advertising. If marijuana disappeared tomorrow, her company would be fucked.
Ah. That explains where the ads in the ads we hate threads come from.
Reply With Quote
  #147  
Old 08-23-2013, 07:21 PM
kayaker kayaker is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Western Pennsylvania
Posts: 13,010
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
Ah. That explains where the ads in the ads we hate threads come from.
Nope, check the "ads gone viral" thread.
Reply With Quote
  #148  
Old 08-23-2013, 07:49 PM
dropzone dropzone is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Cloud Cuckoo Land
Posts: 22,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by PunditLisa View Post
Maybe they were hoping she'd resign.
They may have bent over backwards to let her save face, but she was too dumb/immature/inexperienced in the ways of the world to pick up on it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JFLuvly View Post
You do realize that marijuana may in fact possibly make you better at your job, especially in the design end.
Doing any sort of job, I've noticed a disconnect between the objective quality of the user's work and how good he thinks it is. Creativity does not come from a drug and I'm sure kayaker's GF's ads would be at least as creative were she not high, and from experience I know that turnaround time would be much faster.
Reply With Quote
  #149  
Old 08-23-2013, 08:10 PM
kayaker kayaker is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Western Pennsylvania
Posts: 13,010
Quote:
Originally Posted by dropzone View Post
Creativity does not come from a drug and I'm sure kayaker's GF's ads would be at least as creative were she not high, and from experience I know that turnaround time would be much faster.
Actually, my gf oversees the creative types and doesn't partake personally.

And she assures me, creativity; while it may not "come from a drug", the flow sure is enhanced, to the point it is considered a necessity. And turnaround is worked into a quality project.

Last edited by kayaker; 08-23-2013 at 08:11 PM.. Reason: Swapped a semicolon for a comma. Wanna make sumpin of it?
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:25 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@chicagoreader.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Publishers - interested in subscribing to the Straight Dope?
Write to: sdsubscriptions@chicagoreader.com.

Copyright 2013 Sun-Times Media, LLC.