CSC Releases Guidelines for a Drug-Free Workplace; Drug Testing Required for Hiring
The Civil Service Commission (CSC) has recently issued guidelines to ensure that government agencies remain drug-free for the effective and efficient delivery of public services.
In Resolution no. 1700653 dated March 415, 2017, the CSC stated that drug testing shall remain a requirement for initial entry to government service and those found positive for drug use shall not be hired or appointed.
The CSC also said that, as a condition for retention in service, incumbent public officials and employees shall be subjected to a mandatory random drug testing within six months from the effectivity of the guidelines. Subsequently, government agencies must conduct periodic drug testing in an interval not to exceed two years.
In conducting the mandatory drug test, government agencies must observe the procedures prescribed by the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB), which shall include but are not limited to the following:
- The drug test shall only be conducted by a government drug testing laboratory or by a drug testing laboratory duly authorized and accredited by the DOH;
- The randomly selected public officials and employees will fill up and sign a chain of custody form issued to them;
- The specimen bottles must be properly labelled and taking of specimen samples for screening test must be done in an area where manipulation (e.g. adding of water) is not possible and;
- Specimen samples found positive in the screening test shall be submitted for confirmatory testing within the same day.
Officials or employees who refuse, without any valid reason, to submit themselves to drug testing shall be charged with the administrative offense of Gross Insubordination, which could lead to suspension from the service on the first offense and dismissal for the second offense.
Officials and employees who have tested positive and refuse to undergo treatment or fail to complete their intervention program shall be charged with Grave Misconduct, which could result in dismissal from the service on the first offense.
Likewise, those found to have used dangerous drugs during the prescribed period of intervention or treatment shall be charged with Grave Misconduct punishable by dismissal from the service.