What are the Random Drug Testing Laws of Texas?
A random drug testing program can make your business a safer, more productive place to work. In fact, the federal government mandates substance screening for employees in certain industries such as transportation. While some states limit the power of companies to test their workers for drug and alcohol use, drug laws in Texas allow random workplace drug tests in most instances; Under Texas and federal laws, there is little to no limitation on the right of private employers to adopt drug testing policies for their employees.
Workplace Drug Testing in Texas
Random Drug Testing Laws in Texas have no guidelines for drug testing in private industries. However, employers must abide by federal laws for random drug testing. For example, the Americans With Disabilities Act protects workers who have disabilities and take medications that may cause a positive drug screening. Texas cautions employers to keep all employee drug testing results, both positive and negative, completely confidential.
Best Practices for Texas Drug Testing
Despite the legality of random drug testing, companies should establish these best practices to prevent costly employee lawsuits:
- Publish information about the company drug testing policy and distribute it to all employees
- Maintain confidentiality throughout the testing process
- Apply the random testing protocol equally to all employees without regard for age, race, gender, or disability
Companies that implement random drug screening can choose from a variety of testing methods. ARCPoint Labs of Austin North provides a flexible testing schedule and selects employees from the pool at random for screening. We recommend conducting random tests several times throughout the year for the most effective program.
Legal Drug Testing Requirements
The federal government legally requires certain private companies to drug test their employees. This mandate applies to firms that have a current government grant or contract, as well as to safety-sensitive industries such as:
- Transportation, including but not limited to the maritime, railroad, aviation, and trucking sectors
- Nuclear facilities, nuclear power plants, and radiation recovery sites
- Security and defense, including firms contracted by the Department of Defense
Legal Claims for Drug Testing
Despite your best efforts to create a fair drug policy that adheres to all legal regulations, some employees may file lawsuits related to random substance screening. Awareness of these types of claims can ensure your company has the necessary protections in place.
Federal Discrimination Claims
Discrimination is the most common legal claim resulting from a random drug test. Workers may file a lawsuit claiming they were singled out for substance use screening based on a protected characteristic such as age, race, or gender.
Avoid posting positive drug screening results or circulating them to others within the company. These practices can result in a successful defamation suit if an employee can prove they received false-positive results.
Invasion of Privacy Claims
Employers must also take care about how they conduct drug tests. Some testing methods, such as failure to provide a space with a closed door for the screening, may constitute a legal invasion of privacy.
Companies have the legal right to fire employees who refuse random drug testing. Having a written, public drug screening policy can help defend against wrongful termination lawsuits.
Random Drug Testing Laws in Texas from ARCPoint Labs of Austin North
Legal concerns don’t have to interfere with safer workplace initiatives. Let the experienced team at ARCPoint Labs of Austin North help you design a drug-testing program that protects your business from potential liability. We offer a range of employer substance use solutions, including convenient on-site screening programs. Contact us to schedule your consultation today.
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