HRD forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

Drug-test refusal heard by FWC

Notify me of new replies via email
HC Online | 19 Jun 2013, 12:00 AM Agree 0
Having a clear company policy over drug testing in the workplace is key, as a recent case involving an employee who refused to take one, and was subsequently sacked, shows.
  • Bree | 21 Jun 2013, 11:51 AM Agree 0
    I think that drug testing is a great idea and more work need to be done on this area to make it easier on employers. There is very little information regarding what should be used and does the tests provide levels? To what levels should result in warnings? Dismissal? Or should it be positive & negative - as discussed in the article. This could result in a huge blow to many industries due to many unskilled workers in transport, agriculture, forestry, farming, fishing etc.. The thing is these industries also have high OH&S statistics. It would help if Health departments, WORKSAFE and FWA could help employers and employees to a fair and reasonable solution.
  • Sylvest Larsen | 05 Dec 2014, 11:19 AM Agree 0

    On 6 November 2014 the Fair Work Commission [2014] FWCFB 7889 sanctioned a rather revolutionary drug testing concept, based on re-screening and cross-screening of drugs in multiple specimens. This is an all new, ground-breaking development, where an initial oral fluid test can be confirmed in urine - and the equivalent of having a rapid (on-site) saliva alcohol screen test confirmed in urine...

    This development is a violation of all scientific principles and drug testing standards in the USA (SAMHSA and DOT), Europe (EWDTS) and Australia (AS 4308 and AS 4760), which are based on the universal principle that all drug testing must be based on a two-step procedure, where an initial (non-negative) screen test must be supported by a confirmatory test (using the same, original specimen but a different, more sophisticated technology).

    Re-screening and cross-screening is not an option, and it is not up to the FWC to violate, alter or set new drug testing standards (and what a great mix - half AS 4760 and half AS 4308 - voilà). It is not their jurisdiction or authority. That is for the international scientific community and Standards Australia to decide.

    However, you cannot blame FWC for being frustrated over Standards Australia, who is still in the process of fixing their flawed oral fluid drug testing standard (AS 4760) from 2006. For more details see “The Good the Bad and the Ugly” (, where you will also find the answer to the “urine v oral fluid” question.

Post a reply