Drug Testing: Creating a Better Work Environment

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In 1986, drug testing was enforced for Federal work places by the Reagan Administration. The administration felt that federal work institutions should maintain a “Drug Free” environment. Hoping to keep workplaces drug free led to the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988. The act mandated that creation of drug policies was mandatory in federal contracts (Presley, 27). The Drug Free Workplace Act resulted in a “widespread implementation of drug testing programs across a broad spectrum of workplaces.” The business’s goal was to combat drug use (Macdonald, 408). Today, “80% of top Fortune 1000 companies” have a drug testing program in effect (409). It has been twenty-five years since the Drug Free Workplace Act was initiated and the quality of the workplace has improved dramatically. Drug testing in the work place has led to an overall better work environment.

However, many believe that making drug testing mandatory is unconstitutional. . Protestors propose that drug testing is a violation of an individual’s privacy. They believe there should be a separation between work and private life. The boycotters classify drug use as a private life matter. Sine drug use is a so called private matter; they view drug abusers as being capable of handling their own addictions without the intervention of their place of employment. After all, according to them, drug use only affects the user and no harm is done to innocent coworkers. Many companies assume their employees are clean –that drug abuse is not happening in their business (Say, 22). Presley states that the majority of U.S. workers do not use illicit drugs; therefore, testing everyone is an intrusion of their private life and a waste of money (Presley, 27).

However, statistics...

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