Random Drug Testing for Public Works Projects

October 1, 2007

Wisconsin recently enacted a law requiring substance abuse prevention programs on most state public works projects. Wis. Stat. § 103.503 took effect June 1.

To commence work on a public works project, an employer must have a written substance abuse prevention program that includes the law’s prohibitions and requires employees to submit to random, reasonable-suspicion, and post-accident drug and alcohol testing that’s performed in compliance with federal regulations. The law applies to all public works projects except state highway projects.

Wis. Stat. § 103.503 forbids employees from using or being under the influence of drugs or alcohol while performing project work. Employers must enforce and pay for the requirements. If an employee tests positive or refuses to submit to testing, you may not permit him. to perform work and must immediately remove him from the project site. Employees removed from work may not return until they (1) test negative for drugs or are no longer under the influence of alcohol and (2) are cleared for work in accordance with the employer’s written substance abuse prevention program. The law ensures a consistent drug-free workplace standard for all employers and employees on each project site.

Bottom Line
This law extends drug-free workplace requirements to a larger group of Wisconsin employers, which must enact policies and procedures to comply.

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