Drug Testing History
The American Civil Liberties Union recommends Impairment Testing as a reasonable alternative to urinalysis and hair testing.
Ninety-eight percent of the Fortune 200 companies have implemented some form of drug testing
Corporate drug testing has burgeoned. Ninety-eight percent of the Fortune 200 companies have implemented some form of drug testing. However, a positive drug test still does not indicate whether an employee is impaired or intoxicated on the job, nor does it indicate whether an employee has a drug problem or how often the employee uses drugs. Thus most tests do not provide information relevant to job performance.
In a landmark case, a Federal Judge Jack Weinstein ruled that hair testing was “effective and accurate.”
In a landmark case, Judge Jack Weinstein, who participated in the SOFT conference earlier that year delared in U.S. v. Medina (1990) 749 F.Supp.59 (E.D N.Y.) that the Society’s expressed scientific cautions – centering around the biochemical mechanisms of absorption and quality control in the laboratory – were not based upon a challenge to the scientific principles which formed the foundation of hair testing technology. Judge Weinstein, citing the support of other evidence, concluded that “These accepted principles establish that [hair testing] is an effective and accurate method of detecting the presence of various compounds including narcotics,” and ruled against the defendant Anthony Medina.
The Society of Forensic Toxicology [SOFT] does not endorse the stand-alone use of hair analysis.
Pharmaceutical giant Hoffman-la Roche launches “Corporate Initiatives for a Drug-Free Workplace”
Pharmaceutical giant Hoffman-la Roche launches a nationwide program called “Corporate Initiatives for a Drug-Free Workplace” to motivate corporate leaders to implement practical drug abuse policies and programs in their companies. Roche is also represented on the Board of Directors of The Institute For a Drug-Free Workplace.
The U.S. Supreme Court, citing the administrative search exception, finds a limited application of suspicionless government drug testing constitutional for the first time.
The United States Supreme Court, citing the administrative search exception, finds constitutional a Custom Service program requiring all Custom Service employees seeking promotions to certain “sensitive positions ” to submit to urinalysis regardless of whether thereexisted probable cause or individualized suspicion of drug use. The testing policy had the potential to infringe upon the Fourth Amendment rights of over 120,000 Federal employees despite statements from the Commissioner for the Customs Service maintaining that the workplace was “largely drug-free” to begin with. Affirming the state’s interest in maintaining a drug-free workplace and the protection of “truly sensitive information” over the individual interests of its employees, the Court reasoned that those individual seeking employment in sensitive positions must assume diminished expectations of privacy. With this decision the Court demonstrated that urinalysis would now be upheld even when there is no suspicion of drug use at all.
The U.S. Court of Appeals, citing the administrative search exception, finds urine testing of nuclear power plant employees to be constitutional
Pychemedics begins to market hair testing commercially
Pychemedics begins to market hair testing commercially. Pychemedics Board of Directors includes hair-testing pioneer Werner Baumgartner [Chairman, owing 7.2 % of stock in the company] as well as H. Wayne Huizenga [lead investor, owning 12.9 % of stock in Pychemedics and chairman and CEO of Blockbuster Entertainment Corp.], A. Clinton Allen III [a Blockbuster director and Pychemedics vice chairman and director, owing 9.6 % of Pychemedics stock], Donald F. Flynn [a director of both Blockbuster and Pychemedics, owing 12.2 % stock in Pychemedics] and John J. Melk [also a director of both Blockbuster and Pychemedics, owing 12.2 % stock in Pychemedics]. The Blockbuster Directors own a total of 47% in Pychemedics.
The U.S. Court of Appeals, citing the administrative search exception, approve mass urinalysis procedures in the public workplace
The United State’s Third Circuit Court of Appeals, citing the administrative search exception, approved, for the first time, mass urinalysis procedures in the public workplace. In Shoemaker v Handel [795 F. 2d. 1136 [3rd cir. 1986] five well-known jockeys brought action challenging New Jersey Racing Commission regulations requiring all official jockeys, trainers or grooms to submit to breathalyzers and urine testing. The jockeys argued that such testing was unreasonable and thus unconstitutional, absent of individualized suspicion. The Third Circuit Court disagreed stating that “warrantless searches or seizures by voluntary participants in [a] highly [state] regulated industry… are reasonable” and that “The states’s interest in the revenue generated by wagering and the vulnerability of the industry to untoward influences” overrides the individual’s constitutional right to privacy
By 1985 urine-testing was a $100 million business
Although the Fourth Amendment protects the privacy rights of citizens from government intrusion, the private sector has traditionally had much less restriction. By 1985 urine-testing was a $100 million business. Twenty-five percent of the Fortune 500 corporations had some kind of urine-testing program in place. Companies like Federal Express fired employees on the basis of a single positive drug test despite a federal survey that found such testing procedures to be in error at least twenty percent of the time. According to government figures the percentage of false-positive results at many labs was much higher.