As a growing number of companies make workplace drug and alcohol testing a part of their standard policies, many people are wondering about the legality of these tests, both on the federal level and in their home states. While some states have passed specific bills that restrict employers’ rights to random drug testing, Texas has not yet approved any similar regulations.
Texas Random Drug Testing Laws
In the state of Texas, there are virtually no laws restricting a private employer’s right to implement workplace drug testing. This means that as long as an employer adheres to testing regulations (such as maintaining the confidentiality and providing all employees with information about the company’s testing policy), they are permitted to require both current and prospective employees to submit to testing.
However, employers are not allowed to base their screening request on any type of discrimination, including racial, disability, gender, or age.
Can My Employer Fire Me if I Refuse a Drug and Alcohol Screening?
As long as your employer has a properly written policy describing drug testing as a condition of employment, they can terminate an employee that refuses drug testing.
How Does Workplace Drug Testing Work?
Depending on the employer, workplace drug and alcohol screenings can take a couple of different forms. It’s common for employees to be sent to a third-party laboratory facility to complete the testing process, while other employers may offer on-site testing. In both scenarios, one of the following non-invasive testing methods is typically used:
- Oral fluid drug testing analyzes a saliva sample for alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, opiates, and other drugs. A saliva drug test can detect drugs almost immediately after use and up to two days later.
- Nail drug testing provides a “big picture” view of past drug use, with a detection window that spans up to a year. These tests nail clippings for marijuana, cocaine, opiates, ecstasy, and other illicit substances.
- Hair drug testing is a highly reliable, tamper-proof method that can detect the use of a variety of drugs within an average of 90 days.
- Urine drug testing analyzes a urine sample for drugs such as opiates, PCP, cocaine, benzodiazepines, and many more, and is capable of measuring up to 3-5 days of past drug use depending on usage.
In addition to the popularly selected tests above, some employers may elect to implement additional testing methods such as sweat patch testing and passive exposure testing. Ultimately, each employer determines the combination of testing solutions that best suits their needs and workplace goals.
Learn More about Random Drug Testing from ARCpoint Labs
If you’re an employee that’s been asked to submit to an alcohol or drug screening, it’s important to know that employee drug screenings are a widely-used, preventative measure to reduce drug and alcohol use in the workplace. Being asked to complete a pre-employment, random, or post-accident drug and alcohol test doesn’t necessarily mean your employer suspects you of substance abuse; it may simply be part of the company’s drug and alcohol policy.
Or, perhaps you’re an employer who’s interested in taking a proactive stance against the dangers of workplace drug and alcohol use. Regardless of the reason for workplace drug testing, a convenient, reliable, and affordable lab can make the process simple and straightforward. At ARCpoint Labs of Austin North, we have extensive experience administering workplace testing, and our highly-trained technicians ensure that every lab appointment is quick and hassle-free.
Learn more about workplace drug and alcohol testing and get help choosing the lab solution that best suits your needs by contacting ARCpoint Labs of Austin North today.
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