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Pima County Community College District Standard Practice Guide

SPG Title:  Employee Drug and Alcohol Testing and Reporting
SPG Number:
  SPG-4006/AA
Effective Date:  5/16/08
Approval Date:  5/16/08
Review Date(s):  11/23/11
Revision Date(s):  11/23/11
Schedule for Review & Update:  Annually
Unit Responsible for Review & Update:  Chief Human Resources Officer
Sponsoring Unit/Department:  Chief Human Resources Officer
Regulation Title & No.:  
Policy Title(s) & No(s).:  Drug-Free Work Place, BP-4006
Legal Reference:   Omnibus Drug Initiative Act of 1988, Public Law No. 100-690 (“Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988”); Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989, CFR Part 382; Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, March 28, 2011, A.R.S. § 36-2801, et seq.; A.R.S. § 23-493, et seq.
Cross Reference:  Drug-Free Workplace (BP-4006); Personnel Policy Statement for College Employees (BP-4201); Proposition 203 Medical Marijuana Act


PURPOSE

Pima Community College (“PCC” or the “College”) has a compelling interest in providing a safe learning and work environment for its students, employees and the public that is free from the hazards associated with drug and alcohol use.  In addition, the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989 require that the College maintain a drug and alcohol free work environment.  The purpose of this policy is to achieve a drug-free environment at PCC and to detect and prevent drug use and alcohol abuse and unlawful drug use by College employees.  In addition, it is the purpose of this policy to ensure compliance with A.R.S. 36-2513. 

DEFINITIONS

“Employee” means any person employed (on a temporary or regular basis) by the College or directly engaged in the performance of work under the provision of a contract with the College.

“Drug” or “drugs” mean any narcotic or dangerous drug, vapor-releasing toxic substance, marijuana, steroid or steroid substance, prescription medication or other substance described or enumerated in A.R.S. § 13-3401, as well as any imitation controlled substance described in A.R.S. § 13-3451.  “Drug” also includes over-the-counter medications or other over-the-counter substances when the use of such over-the-counter medications or substance is not for the purpose for which the medication or substance was intended and results in the employee being impaired at work.

“Current use of any drug” means drug use that has occurred recently enough to justify the College’s reasonable belief that involvement with drugs is ongoing.  Current use of any drug is not limited to any specific time frame and depends on the facts of each individual case.

 “Conviction” includes all criminal convictions, including those based on pleas of no-contest.

“Safety sensitive position” means any job that includes tasks or duties that the employer in good faith believes could affect the safety or health of the employee performing the task or others, including any of the following:

  1. Operating a motor vehicle, other vehicle, equipment, machinery or power tools.
  2. Repairing, maintaining or monitoring the performance or operation of any equipment, machinery or manufacturing process, the malfunction or disruption of which could result in injury or property damage.
  3. Performing duties in the residential or commercial premises of a customer, supplier or vendor.
  4. Preparing or handling food or medicine.
  5. Working in any occupation regulated pursuant to Title 32.

“Impairment” is defined as symptoms that may decrease or lessen the employee’s performance of the duties or tasks of the employee’s job position including:

  1. Changes to the employee’s speech, walking, standing, physical dexterity, agility, coordination, actions, movement, demeanor, appearance, clothing or odor.
  2. Irrational or unusual behavior.
  3. Negligence or carelessness in operating equipment, machinery or production or manufacturing processes.
  4. Disregard for the safety of the employee or others.
  5. Involvement in an accident that results in serious damage to equipment, machinery or property.
  6. Any other symptoms causing a reasonable suspicion of the use of drugs or alcohol.

“SPG” means standard practice guide.

Prohibited Conduct

Employees shall not:

1.       Violate any of the provisions of this SPG.

2.       Refuse to submit to a drug/alcohol test when directed to do so; fail to report immediately to the designated testing facility when directed to submit to a drug/alcohol test; or attempt to interfere, alter, substitute, or in any way affect the outcome of a drug/alcohol testing procedure.

3.       Report for duty or remain on duty while having blood-alcohol concentration of 0.04 or greater. 

4.       Report for duty or remain on duty when impaired by alcohol and/or drugs.

5.       Use, transfer, or possess alcohol or drugs while on duty at any College site including parking lots.

6.       Use, manufacture, sell, transfer, or possess drugs at any time, except when (a) such use or possession is pursuant to, and in compliance with, a lawful prescription issued by a physician who has advised the employee that use of the substance will not adversely affect the employee’s ability to perform the essential functions of his or her job, with reasonable accommodations, if appropriate; or (b) when such use or possession is pursuant to, and in compliance with, the applicable provisions of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act.  Note that possession of medical marijuana while on duty or at any College site and/or being impaired by the use of medical marijuana while on duty or at any college site, is never permitted, even for authorized medical marijuana cardholders.  Note also that for some employees, specific provisions found elsewhere in this SPG may be more restrictive than this subparagraph (e.g. instructors in the Truck Driving Program).

7.       Test positive for drugs at any time.  For the purpose of this SPG, a positive drug test result is one that indicates the use of a drug and such use cannot be explained by the appropriate use of prescription medications or other legitimate reason, including any use authorized under the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act and this SPG.

Special Provisions:

Employees in “safety sensitive” positions may not use any drug, whether legal, prescribed by a physician or otherwise, if the College possesses reliable information that such drug use could cause an impairment or otherwise decrease or lessen the employee’s job performance or ability to perform the employee’s job duties.  

Commissioned Law Enforcement personnel certified through AZPOST must comply with any rules and requirements promulgated by AZPOST with respect to the use or possession of marijuana or the association with a medical marijuana dispensary pursuant to the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act.

Notwithstanding the above, the appropriate possession of alcohol and/or drugs when required to perform one’s job is not considered prohibited conduct. 

PROCESS AND PROCEDURES

This SPG will be administered by the College’s Chief Human Resources Officer.

All drug and/or alcohol testing will be considered paid, work time.

All employees are subject to alcohol and drug testing pursuant to this SPG.

All employees shall receive a copy of this SPG at time of initial employment with the College and after any updates and changes to this SPG. As an alternative to providing a copy of the SPG to an employee, the College may give written notice of the URL address where this SPG can be reviewed.

Upon the approval of the Chief Human Resources Office, the Employee Relations Office shall schedule all drug testing, arrange transportation of employees when necessary and maintain all testing documentation.

Duty to Disclose Use of Medication

An employee may inform the Chief Human Resources Officer of his or her prescription or regular non-prescription drug use if the employee believes that such use may impact his or her compliance with this SPG. 

An employee must inform the Chief Human Resources Officer of any prescription or regular non-prescription drug use if such use will or reasonably could impair the employee’s ability to perform the essential functions of the employee’s job.  The information supplied will be kept confidential except, where appropriate, the Chief Human Resources Officer may share the information with the employee’s supervisor and other appropriate administrators, including the Chancellor. 

An employee may be required to provide information necessary to confirm that any drug use will not prevent the employee from performing the essential functions of his or her job, with reasonable accommodations.

Duty to Provide Notice of Criminal Drug and/or Alcohol Convictions

An employee must inform the Chief Human Resources Officer of any criminal drug and/or alcohol conviction related to the workplace within five (5) calendar days of the conviction.  If the employee occupies a position funded in whole or in part by a federal grant, the College will notify the granting agency of such convictions, regardless of how the College obtained information about the convictions, as required by law.

Disciplinary Action

An employee who engages in conduct in violation of this SPG may be disciplined in accordance with College policy up to and including termination of employment.  (See Personnel Policy Statement for College Employees, Section V.)

Reasonable Cause Testing

Drug and/or alcohol testing will be conducted when any employee’s supervisor has “reasonable cause” to believe that an employee is impaired to any degree while at work or any College site because of alcohol or drug use. Drug testing will also be conducted when any employee’s supervisor has “reasonable cause” to believe that an employee has used any drug at any time, unless that drug use was lawfully authorized pursuant to the Medical Marijuana Act or pursuant to a medical prescription.

The determination that reasonable cause exists shall be based on any one or more of the following:

1.       Direct observation by a supervisor of an employee using or possessing drugs and/or alcohol.

2.       Observations of a pattern of abnormal and/or erratic behavior by an employee that is indicative of probable alcohol and/or drug use.

3.       Specific physical, behavioral, speech and/or performance indicators of probable alcohol and/or drug use or possession by an employee.

4.       Information about an employee’s possession or use of alcohol and/or drugs when such information is obtained from a reliable and credible source and verified by the Chief Human Resources Officer. Employees who, in good faith, report what they believe to be a workplace violation of this SPG will have their reports treated as confidential to the extent reasonably possible.

5.       Information from a reliable and credible source and verified by the College that an employee has been arrested for and/or convicted of a drug offense.

As soon as possible following a determination that reasonable cause testing is warranted, the supervisor shall seek authorization from the Chief Human Resources Officer, or his/her designee, to transport the subject employee to the testing facility.

Upon authorization by the Chief Human Resources Officer or his/her designee, the supervisor or a member of the College’s Department of Public Safety shall immediately transport the subject employee to the testing facility and shall return the employee to his or her home after the testing is complete.  The employee shall not transport himself or herself to or from the testing facility.  Alternatively, the supervisor may contact the Employee Relations Office to arrange for transportation of the employee to the testing facility and home after the testing.  Transportation may be coordinated through the College’s Department of Public Safety.

The supervisor shall promptly document in writing those facts observed by or made known to the supervisor that gave the supervisor reasonable cause for the testing and shall promptly deliver such documentation to the Chief Human Resources Officer.

An employee identified for reasonable cause testing will be placed on leave with pay pending results of the drug and/or alcohol test(s) or, at discretion of the Chief Human Resources Officer or designee, this requirement may be waived and the employee directed to continue to work as assigned.

A test that indicates a positive result for alcohol or drugs, and that constitutes a violation of this SPG, may result in immediate discipline up to and including suspension or dismissal.

Truck Driver Training Program Instructors  

Pursuant to federal law, staff instructors in the College Truck Driver Training Program are subject to drug and alcohol testing in the following situations:

  • Post Offer/Pre-employment
  • Reasonable Suspicion/Cause
  • Random Drug Testing
  • Return-to-duty and follow-up testing when a prohibited drug and alcohol rule is violated
  • Post-Accident.

A truck driver instructor shall not use or possess alcohol or any illicit drug, including marijuana, while assigned to perform any work-related function or actually performing work-related function and must not use alcohol within four hours of reporting to work or after receiving notice to report to work. Additionally, a truck driver instructor must not report for duty or remain on duty when using any controlled substance unless used pursuant to the instructions of an authorized medical practitioner who has made a good faith judgment that the use of the substance at the prescribed or authorized dosage level is consistent with the safe performance of the employee’s duties.  Notwithstanding any other provisions of this SPG, truck driver instructors may not use marijuana at any time.  Supervisors of truck driver instructors must attend at least one hour of training on alcohol misuse symptoms and indicators used in making determinations for reasonable suspicion testing.

Random drug and alcohol testing will be conducted in accordance with the Omnibus Transportation Employee Testing Act of 1991.  A minimum of 10% of the average number of instructors shall be tested annually for drugs and alcohol, subject to the Federal Highway Administration’s raising or lowering the annual percentage rate (49 CFR 382.305). Random testing selection shall be as follows:

  • Employees are to be placed in and remain in a pool for random selection.
  • A defensible random selection process will be used.
  • Tests will be given at least once each quarter.
  • Dates of testing will not be announced in advance.
  • The Human Resources Office is responsible for the selection process and notification to employees identified for random testing.

Return-to-Duty and Follow-up Testing

Before returning to duty, an employee who has engaged in misconduct involving alcohol misuse or drug use in violation of this SPG shall undergo a return-to-duty test, which must indicate a blood-alcohol concentration of less than 0.04 in the case of alcohol testing and a negative result in the case of  drug testing.  Notwithstanding the foregoing, no adverse action will be taken against an employee solely because a return-to-duty test indicates a positive result for marijuana if that employee is authorized to use marijuana pursuant to the provisions of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act and such use, in conformance with the Medical Marijuana Act, is not otherwise prohibited by this SPG.

An employee who has been given the opportunity to undergo rehabilitation for drug use and/or alcohol abuse will, as a condition of returning to duty, be required to agree to reasonable follow-up testing established by the Chief Human Resources Officer. The extent and duration of the follow-up testing will depend upon the nature and extent of the employee’s prior substance abuse problem. There is no requirement of reasonable cause for follow-up testing.  In no instance shall such follow-up testing be ordered by the Chief Human Resources Officer more than one (1) time within a seventy-two (72) hour period or more than four times in a given fiscal year, or for more than 24 months following the employee’s return to work.  This limitation does not apply to any reasonable cause testing that may be ordered during a time period also covered by follow-up testing.

Drug and Alcohol Use Rehabilitation

The use of unlawful drugs and the abuse of alcohol may pose serious health risks to the user.  Employees with an alcohol abuse or drug use problem are strongly encouraged to seek assistance.  (See Personnel Policy Statement for College Employees, Section III. J.) The College District is committed to establishing educational awareness designed to affect positively the problems of irresponsible use of alcohol and the use and abuse of illegal substances.

Each employee who engages in the conduct prohibited by this SPG shall be advised of resources available to the employee for evaluating and resolving problems associated with alcohol abuse or drug use, including the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of substance abuse professionals and counseling and treatment programs.  Employees may contact the Employee Relations Office for information about available community resources and/or the College’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for counseling and treatment. The College’s EAP is available as a resource for all regular employees. The employee’s compliance with recommendations by the EAP is voluntary. The employee’s job security will not be jeopardized by the use of the EAP services. In addition, a regular employee may also contact the Employee Service Center-Benefits representative for information about his/her College health insurance.

At the option of the Chief Human Resources Officer, an employee who engages in the conduct prohibited by this SPG may be required to undergo an initial evaluation by a substance abuse professional in order to determine what assistance, if any, the employee needs to resolve an alcohol abuse and/or drug use problems. The cost of such initial evaluation shall be paid for by the College. The cost of any other type of evaluation (other than the initial evaluation) and the cost of any rehabilitation shall be paid for by the employee.

In appropriate circumstances, as determined in the discretion of the Chief Human Resources Officer, an employee may be allowed to undergo drug and/or alcohol rehabilitation treatment (1) in lieu of being disciplined, or (2) as a condition of receiving less severe discipline.  The option to undergo rehabilitation treatment instead of discipline or as a condition to receiving less severe discipline is more likely to be offered to employees who self-report a drug and/or alcohol problem than those who do not self-report.

Nothing in this section shall be interpreted to limit or restrict the District’s ability to discipline or dismiss an employee who violates the terms of this SPG.

Drug and Alcohol Abuse Testing Procedures

Testing Procedures in General

  • Sample testing shall comply with scientifically accepted analytical methods and procedures, and will be conducted at a laboratory approved or certified by the United Stated Department of Health and Human Services and/or the Arizona Department of Health Services.

Any employee who is subject to drug or alcohol testing pursuant to this SPG has the right, upon request, to explain in a confidential setting a positive test result.

The Lab, the Collection Site, and the MRO

The Chief Human Resources Officer shall select an appropriate collection site for collecting and testing breath specimens and for collecting urine specimens (the “Collection Site”). The Collection Site will report drug and alcohol test results and any conduct indicating refusal to take or tampering with a drug and/or alcohol test directly to the Chief Human Resources Officer.

The Chief Human Resources Officer shall select a lab to perform drug testing on urine specimens. The lab selected shall be certified by the Department of Health and Human Services and/or the Arizona Department of Health Services to conduct drug testing (the “Lab”). The Collection Site will send urine samples to the Lab for drug testing.

The Chief Human Resources Officer shall select a Medical Review Officer (the “MRO”) to review drug test results from the Lab before reporting the results to the Chief Human Resources Officer, as more specifically explained below.

Authorization to Test

When an employee reports to the Collection Site, the drug and/or alcohol screening procedure will be explained and the employee will assist in completing any necessary forms. All persons subject to testing will sign the necessary authorization forms to allow the test to be performed and the test results and related information to be provided to the MRO and/or the Chief Human Resources Officer, as applicable.  Refusal to cooperate or to authorize the testing may result in discipline up to and including termination.

Medical Review Officer for Drug Results

The MRO shall be responsible for (i) reviewing the results of drug tests before they are reported to the Chief Human Resources Officer; (ii) reviewing and interpreting each confirmed positive drug test to determine if there is an alternative medical explanation for any positive test result; (iii) conducting an interview with an individual who tests positive, including those employees who may test positive because they are using marijuana in compliance with the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act; (iv) reviewing the individual’s medical history and medical records made available to the MRO to determine if the positive result was caused by legally prescribed medication; (v) if applicable, confirming the validity of a medical marijuana registry identification card; (vi) requiring a retest of the original specimen if the MRO deems it necessary; and (vii) verifying that the laboratory report and the specimen correlate.

The results of negative tests will be communicated by the MRO to the Chief Human Resources Officer. If the MRO determines that there is a legitimate medical explanation for the positive test other than the unauthorized use of a prohibited drug, the MRO will conclude that the test is negative. If the MRO concludes that a particular test yields drug levels that are below the levels set out below, the MRO will conclude that the test is negative.

If the MRO determines that there is no legitimate explanation for a positive test other than use of a prohibited drug, the MRO will communicate the test results as a positive to the Chief Human Resources Officer.

General Drug Testing Procedures

The initial test performed by the Lab for drugs on any urine sample will be the Enzyme-Multiplied-Immunoassay Technique (EMIT). All specimens identified as positive on the initial test shall be confirmed using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) techniques. Tests will screen for the drugs listed below. The cutoff levels (positive tests) are as follows:



EMIT

GC/MS

1

Marijuana and metabolites

50 ng/ml

15 ng/ml

2

Cocaine and metabolites

300 ng/ml

150 ng/ml

3

Phencyclidine PCP

25 ng/ml

25 ng/ml

4

Amphetamines

1,000 ng/ml

500 ng/ml

5

Opiate metabolites

300 ng/ml

200 ng/ml

The Collection Site shall have an enclosure within which private urination can occur, a toilet for completion of urination, and a source of water for washing hands.

Procedures for collecting urine specimens shall allow individual privacy unless there is reason to believe that a particular individual may alter or substitute the specimen. Examples of reasonable cause to believe a specimen will be altered or substituted include: the presentation of a urine specimen that falls outside the normal temperature range (90.0 deg. F - 100.0 deg. F); presentation of a specimen with a specific gravity of less than 1.0003 and a creatinine concentration below .2g/l; presentation of a specimen which contains the presence of adulterants; or observation of conduct clearly indicating an attempt to substitute or adulterate the sample.  In such cases, the individual may be required to repeat the test under observation.

The Lab will retain all drug specimens for a minimum period of one (1) week. At such time, negative specimens will be discarded. Positive specimens will be retained in a separate and secure area for a minimum of one (1) year. Within this one (1) year period, the person tested, the MRO, or the Chief Human Resources Officer can request in writing that the laboratory retain the sample for an additional reasonable period specified in the request. If no proper written request is received within the one (1) year period, the sample may be discarded.

An employee may submit one written request for retesting of a specimen producing a positive test result, either by the original or another certified or approved laboratory. Such request must be made not later than 72 hours after receipt of a confirmed positive test result. The employee shall be reminded of this provision concerning retesting, including the timeframe to request retesting any time after being directed to submit to a drug test and prior to 24 hours after the actual drug test occurs. This will normally be done by the person who directed the employee to undergo testing.  The employee shall pay the cost of the additional test and all handling and shipping costs.  If result of the retest is negative, the employee will be reimbursed the cost of the retest.

General Alcohol Testing Procedures

Alcohol testing shall be performed by the Collection Site using an evidentiary breath testing device using gas chromatography technology. The Collection Site also shall run a confirmation test using an evidentiary breath testing device.

The MRO shall be responsible for reviewing and reporting the results of an alcohol test to the Chief Human Resources Officer.

Confidentiality and Record Retention

The MRO shall maintain all records concerning drug tests in a secure fashion to insure confidentiality and privacy. The MRO shall disclose records to the Chief Human Resources Officer that pertain to an employee’s drug and/or alcohol test only to the extent necessary to inform the Chief Human Resources Officer of (i) positive or negative test results; (ii) refusal to take a test; or (iii) any work-related safety risks occasioned by either drug and/or alcohol use.

Any employee who undergoes drug or alcohol testing pursuant to this SPG may, upon request, receive a copy of the written test results.

The Chief Human Resources Officer shall maintain all records received from the Collection Site, the Lab and/or the MRO concerning test results in a secure fashion to insure confidentiality and privacy.

Records showing an employee passed a drug and/or alcohol test will be kept for at least one (1) year. Records showing that an employee failed a drug and/or alcohol test will be kept for at least five (5) years.

Other than as referenced above, information regarding an employee’s test results will be released by the MRO and the Chancellor or the Chief Human Resources Officer to third parties only upon court order or the written consent of the individual tested, except that results may be released and relied upon by the College in any administrative or court action involving the drug test or any discipline resulting from a violation of this SPG, including but not limited to employee discipline or termination proceedings.

Cost of Drug and/or Alcohol Testing

The College shall be responsible for the cost of transporting an employee to and from the testing facility and for the cost of any drug and/or alcohol testing except that any costs associated with an employee’s written request for retesting of a specimen producing a positive test result shall be paid by the employee as set forth above.

Miscellaneous

In determining an appropriate course of action when an employee has engaged in off-campus, non-College related drug use, the College will undertake a case-by-case analysis that will include consideration of individual circumstances and the impact of the employee’s drug use on the employee’s job and the College community.

Minor procedural errors in the implementation of this SPG, as determined by the Chief Human Resources Officer, that do not cause actual prejudice to the employee shall not be grounds for invalidating a drug test or overturning discipline imposed pursuant to this SPG.

Each College employee who regularly supervises other employees shall receive training on alcohol abuse and drug use. The training shall cover the physical, behavioral, speech, and performance indicators of probable alcohol abuse and use of drugs. Employees will be required to attend this training within 60-days of hire into a position designated as supervisory by the College. The Chief Human Resources Officer will ensure initial and update training is provided and will monitor attendance. 

OUTCOMES

This Standard Practice Guide provides the College process by which it complies with laws related to a drug-free workplace and the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act.