Drug and Alcohol Testing: The Building Code

By Partner John Vizzone

On 16 October 2015 new laws came into effect which require a work health and safety regime in respect of alcohol and drug testing on commonwealth worksites.

The new laws apply to those in the construction industry who are principal contractors on sites that have at least 50% of total funding from the Federal government and where that funding is over $5,000,000 for the whole site. Alternatively, if the Federal government funding is in excess of $10,000,000 (regardless of the percentage contribution), you will also need to comply with the changes.

We expect that to meet its obligations, principal contractors will seek to require all sub-contractor’s on site to comply with a strict alcohol and drug testing regime.

So what policy should be adopted?

A sound drug and alcohol policy should be created. The policy should:

  1. Clearly outline to workers what the policy is;

  2. Make it clear that being at work under the influence of drugs or alcohol is against the law;

  3. Make a clear policy for standing down workers that are under the influence;

  4. Create a clear discplinary process for workers that breach the policy.

If your Company is involved in Commonwealth projects it is important that you are aware of the overall policy as there are numerous other obligations on employers to comply with an array of laws.

If you have any questions regarding the Building Code, WHS laws, drug and alcohol policies, or any other matters please do not hesitate to contact John Vizzone at john.vizzone@vrtlawyres.com.au or 02 9667 1271.

Changes to the Building Code require a strong drug and alcohol policy.

Changes to the Building Code require a strong drug and alcohol policy.

John Vizzone has a large portfolio of commercial clients and provides hollistic advice to those clients in both commerical disputes, transactions and employment law. 

#drugandalcoholpolicy #Employmentlaw #whs

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