Employment drug testing in Vermont is allowed if performed in accordance with certain government regulations. State law only permits the testing of potential employees if the submission of a negative drug test is a pre-established condition to the offer of employment. The applicant must have also received written notice from the employer as to what drugs will be tested and the procedure which is to be used. The laws which regulate drug testing on current employees differs from those regulating applicant tests (see below). Random testing is prohibited in the State of Vermont.
Can Current Employees be Tested? Yes, however the employer must have met the following conditions:
- A qualified individual has found reasonable suspicion that the employee is using drugs or is under the influence of drugs while working.
- A legitimate rehabilitation program, known as the “Employee Assistance Program” (EAP), has been made available to the employee.
- The test is conducted in accordance with § 514.
Is Certified Testing Required? Yes, all testing must be performed at a facility designated by the Department of Health.
Laws – Title 21, Subchapter 11
What Can be Tested? Urine, hair, breath (for alcohol testing), and blood if drawn from the subject at the time that a urine or hair sample is provided.
How to Conduct a Legal Drug Test
Step 1 – Have the applicant review and sign the Drug Test Release Form before proceeding. Afterwards, request a workplace drug test by contacting one of the Vermont Department of Health certified laboratories (List of Laboratories).
Step 2 – A test may be administered in accordance § 514. The employer must designate a Collector for the purpose of collecting a sample from the applicant or employee. If testing for drugs, the subject may provide a urine or hair sample. A blood sample may also be drawn at the time that the urine or hair sample is given (at the expense of the subject). Testing for alcohol will require the subject to submit a breath test.
Step 3 – If the individual tests positive for alcohol, a confirmation test shall be administered within 10-20 minutes of the initial screening. A positive drug test must also be confirmed by a secondary test of the same sample.
Step 4 – Results of the test must be distributed to the individual. At their own expense, the individual may conduct a retest at an independent laboratory.
Step 5 – An applicant for employment who tests positive for drugs or alcohol may be disqualified from consideration. An employee may not be terminated if he/she agrees to enroll in the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). However, the employer may suspend the employee for the period of rehabilitation. If the employee completes the EAP and tests positive once again to a legal drug-test, the employee may be terminated.