The Department of Transportation recently announced that they had delayed implementation of their new drug and alcohol testing policies. I actually caught wind of this substance abuse screening news a week or so ago, but couldn’t make heads or tails over what changed or why. Shocking, right?
I’ve always subscribed to the philosophy of not writing about what you don’t know or understand, so I’ve decided to defer to the folks Delaware law firm, Young, Conaway, Stargatt and Taylor who author The Delaware Employment Law Blog .
Attorney Molly DiBianca writes:
Last month, the Department of Transportation (DOT), announced that changes to its drug and alcohol testing regulations would go into effect on August 25, 2008. The new regulations amended and added to 49 C.F.R. Part 40, relating to adulterated, substituted, diluted, or invalid urine specimens. After complaints from the AFL-CIO’s Transportation Trades Department (TTD), though, the DOT has delayed the implementation of the new rules. The regulations will be open for comment submission for one month and are scheduled for their official debut in November—in whatever form they take at that point.
So what caused the sudden change of heart? The TTD, along with the Association of American Railroads, the American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association; the Teamsters, and the Air Transport Association, joined by the Regional Airline Association, asked the DOT to reconsider the portion of the new regulations that would make specimen validity testing (SVT) mandatory. The DOT considers mandatory SVT to be an important way to combat cheating on drug tests.