Drug and Alcohol Testing
Board adopted 5/15/14
Cabinet adopted 4/2/14
Cabinet amended 9/3/15
Drug and Alcohol Testing Policy
It is the policy of the College that the use, possession, or presence of alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs by employees while on duty and students, in a vehicle or on property owned or used by the College is prohibited. Employees or students shall not report for duty, be on College controlled property, or at a College activity under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or illegal drugs. Violations of this policy will be governed by the College Drug and Alcohol Testing Procedure.
For purposes of this policy, the term “illegal drug” means intoxicants and narcotics, marijuana, or any other controlled substance as defined by Nebraska or Federal law. The term “illegal drugs” does not include any medication, which has been lawfully prescribed to be used by the student or employee.
Violation of this policy shall be grounds for participation in an alcohol abuse program and/or the termination of employment or dismissal from the College.
Drug and Alcohol Testing Procedures
The results of any tests performed on the body fluid or breath specimen of a student or an employee, as directed by the College to determine the presence of drugs or alcohol shall not be used to deny any continued employment or administrative action unless the following requirements are met: (1) a positive finding of drugs by preliminary screening procedures has been subsequently confirmed by a method which has been or may be approved by the Nebraska Department of Health; or (2) a positive finding of alcohol by a preliminary screening procedure is subsequently confirmed by either: (a) gas chromatography or other method which has been, or may be approved by the Nebraska Department of Health; or (b) a breath-testing device operated by a trained and certified operator.
Types of Tests
The College may conduct drug and alcohol tests in three circumstances: (1) pre-employment for full-time and specified part-time positions, (2) to be in compliance with external entities that require a drug-screen (ex. clinical locations, etc.), and (3) for reasonable cause. Pre-employment testing shall be paid by the College.
When required, applicants for employment must consent to a urine drug screen. The test shall be administered after a conditional offer of employment has been extended. If the applicant tests positive, the conditions for employment shall be deemed not to have been met and the applicant shall not be hired.
Compliance with External Entities Testing
When required, employees shall consent to a urine drug screen or breathe test per the requirements of external entities. The employee shall also be requested to execute a consent form authorizing the analysis of his or her urine for the purpose of determining the presence of illegal drugs and/or blood or breathe tests to determine alcohol content. The form shall authorize the release of the written results of such tests to the College. The refusal of an employee to submit a urine specimen, blood test, breath sample test, or execute a consent form when requested to do so shall be grounds for discharge or dismissal. If the employee tests positive for drug or alcohol use, the conditions for compliance with external entities shall be deemed not to have been met which may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.
If the Vice President of Human Resources for employees or the Campus President for students conclude that reasonable cause exists to believe that an employee is demonstrating characteristics of illegal drug use or alcohol use, the employee shall be requested to submit a test of his or her urine for the purpose of determining the presence of illegal drugs. A gas chromatograph, blood test, or other approved method shall be used to determine blood alcohol content. The testing shall be performed by a trained and certified operator under the supervision of the Vice President of Human Resources, or by such other persons as may be designated by him/her. The employee or student shall also be requested to execute a consent form authorizing the analysis of his or her urine for the purpose of determining the presence of illegal drugs and/or blood or breathe tests to determine alcohol content. The form shall authorize the release of the written results of such tests to the College. The refusal of an employee or student to submit a urine specimen, blood test, breath sample test, or execute a consent form when requested to do so shall be grounds for discharge or dismissal.
Reasonable grounds for requesting that an employee or student submit to testing and execution of a consent form shall be deemed to exist when the employee or student manifests physical or physiological symptoms or reactions commonly associated with the use of a controlled substance or alcoholic beverages. Reasonable grounds include, but are not limited to: the odor of alcohol on the breath; slurred or thick speech; apparent loss of coordination or unsteady gait; or uncharacteristic emotional behavior. Reasonable grounds shall also be deemed to exist whenever an employee or student is involved in an accident while on duty, which results in an injury to himself or herself or any other person, or which causes damage to the College property or the property of another individual.
Refusal to Test
Refusal to submit to the types of drug and alcohol test employed by the College shall be grounds for refusal to hire applicants, to terminate employment of existing employees, and to dismiss students. A refusal to test is defined to be conduct, which would obstruct the proper administration of a test. A delay in providing the urine, blood, or breath specimen could be considered a refusal. If an employee or student cannot provide a sufficient urine or blood specimen or adequate breath, he/she shall be evaluated by a physician of the College’s choice. If the physician cannot find a legitimate medical explanation for the inability to provide a specimen (either urine or breath), it shall be considered a refusal to test. In that circumstance, the employee shall be subject to termination or the student to dismissal.
Drug testing shall be performed through urinalysis. Urinalysis shall test for the presence of drugs and/or metabolites considered to be a controlled substance, including but not limited to the following substances: (1) marijuana, (2) cocaine, (3) opiates, (4) amphetamines, and (5) phencyclidine (PCP); or a controlled substance as defined by the federal Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S. C§801 et. seq) or Nebraska Uniform Controlled Substances Act (Neb. Rev. Stat. §28-401 to §28-456.01 and §28-458 to §28-462), as such laws may from time to time be amended. The urinalysis procedure starts with the collection of a urine sample. Urine specimen shall be submitted to and all confirmatory tests shall be performed by a clinic, hospital, or laboratory which is licensed pursuant to the federal Clinical Laboratories Improvement Act of 1967, 42 U.S.C. 263a, or which is accredited by the College of American pathologists for testing.
As part of the collection process, the specimen provided shall be split into two vials: a primary vial and a secondary vial. A certified laboratory shall perform initial screenings on all primary vials. In the event that the primary specimen tests positive, a confirmation test of that specimen shall be performed before being reported by the laboratory to the Medical Review Officer (MRO) as a positive.
A written record of the chain of custody of the specimen shall be maintained from the time of the collection of the specimen until the specimen is no longer required.
All Laboratory results shall be reported by the laboratory to an MRO designated by the College. Negative test results shall be reported by the MRO to the College Vice President of Human Resources for employees or Dean of Students for students. Before reporting a positive test to the College, the MRO shall attempt to contact the employee or student to discuss the test result. If the MRO is unable to contact the employee or student directly, the MRO shall contact the Vice President of Human Resources for employees and Dean of Students for students, who shall, in turn, contact the employee or student and direct the employee or student to contact the MRO. Upon being so directed, the employee or student shall contact the MRO immediately or, if after the MRO’s customary business hours, then the start of the next business day. In the MRO’s sole discretion, a determination shall be made as to whether a result is positive or negative.
An individual testing positive may make a request of the MRO to have the secondary vial tested. The employee or student may request that the secondary vial be tested by a different certified lab than that which tested the primary specimen. The individual making the request for a test of the second specimen must prepay all costs associated with the test. Request for testing of a second specimen is timely if it is made to the MRO within 72 hours of the individual being notified by the College of a positive test result.
The College shall perform alcohol tests using an approved breath testing device. The College shall utilize the approved breath testing device provided by a vendor or agent. Employees or students shall report to the site of the approved breath-testing device as directed by the College. The approved breath-testing device shall be operated by a certified breath alcohol technician. The employee or student shall follow all instructions given by the certified breath alcohol technician. Employees or students with tests indicating a blood alcohol concentration in violation or the then-current state limit for driving or greater are considered to have engaged in conduct prohibited by this policy which may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination. All alcohol tests (except pre-employment) shall be performed just prior to, during or just after employee’s work time.
The College shall insure supervisors or deans designated to determine whether reasonable suspicion exists to require an employee or student to undergo testing to receive training on alcohol misuse and training on controlled substance use. Training shall cover the physical, behavioral, speech, and performance indicators of probable alcohol misuse and use of controlled substances.
The results of any urinalysis conducted under this policy shall be made available to the employee or student and the Vice President of Human Resources for employees or Dean of Students for students. The results of such tests shall not otherwise be divulged to any other person except when approved by the President. The College shall not be precluded, however, from divulging such test results upon request from agencies of local, state, or federal government; in any administrative or judicial proceeding wherein the results of such a test are relevant to the issues involved; or when the College is required to divulge such test results by subpoena.