The company arranged, on separate occasions, for drug tests to be carried out on two employees, the apparent reason for one being “mood swings” and no reason being given for the other, though it arose in relation to an allegation of insubordinate behaviour. Both employees showed significant positive readings for cannabis in urine samples. Despite the readings, both employees were told they were not a health and safety risk and were required (in breach of the employer’s policy) to resume work straightaway. Both employees started rehabilitation courses which were aimed at weaning the employees off drugs rather than attempting a “cold turkey” approach. In spite of the fact that testing in the rehabilitation period was intended for the purpose of comparison, and not as evidence to support dismissal or other disciplinary action, the two employees were required to take second tests a fairly short time after beginning rehabilitation. One employee was drug tested because he injured himself at work, the other employee was accused (two weeks later) of smelling of cannabis at a work function. The employees were dismissed because they were both still showing positive readings for cannabis, though at much lower levels.

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