The most basic rule if
you take a urine test and it comes back positive is to admit
nothing. The prudent person, whatever the circumstances,
should insist that a positive test result is impossible.
An employer should be asked the following questions
with the clear understanding that if the matter is not dropped
and the results expunged from your employment file that you will
proceed to exercise your legal rights.
Pertinent questions include : What test was
I given? By whom? Was your test sent to another lab? How much
time elapsed between the taking of the sample and the test? Could
you have a copy of the "chain of custody" - those who had control
of your sample at all times? What precautions were taken to insure
that you weren't a victim of false positive results? What confirmatory
test was taken? By whom? etc.
Remember , if you are a victim of false test
results and you lose your job, you may have a million dollar
liability suit. Given the information in this pamphlet, what
do you think a reasonable jury would decide if you lost your
job, your reputation, your standing in your community, because
you were forced to take a urine drug test which your employer
and testing laboratory knew to be inaccurate? Over the next few
years, damage verdicts against employers and laboratories will
probably do more than anything else to stop dragnet approach
to drug testing.
U.S. District Judge A.J. McNamara of New Orleans
forced the Southern Pacific Railroad to stop testing when the
company was caught using a video camera. Judge McNamara wrote
this is absolutely outrageous conduct when employees are forced
to urinate under the direct observation of a camera."
In an important test case, Plainfield, New
Jersey officials arrived at a city firehouse at 6:30 AM, locked
the doors and urine tested the firefighters. Sixteen of 103 firefighters
tested positive, were terminated and criminal charges were filed
against them. In the subsequent trial before US District Judge
H. Lee Sarokin, the firefighters were reinstated with back pay.
Judge Sarokin wrote in his decision:
"The sweeping manner in which the officials
set about to accomplish their goals violated the firefighters
individual liberties. ..The City of Plainfield essentially presumed
the guilt of each person tested."
"If we choose to violate the rights of the
innocent in order to discover and act against the guilty, then
we have transformed our country into a police state and abandoned
one of the fundamental tenets of a free society. In order to
win the war on drugs, we must not sacrifice the life of the constitution
in the battle."