US Drug Enforcement Agency employees have failed drug tests on multiple occasions, with little consequences for their actions. This is perhaps one of the most fitting recent examples that no one is above the need for drug testing in the workplace, and that every sector can benefit from its effective implementation.

While it is true that they obviously come into contact with a lot of illegal substances and have access to them more than any other legitimate profession, surely they should know better being the nation’s frontline representatives on the crackdown on drugs.

What is more, the chances of being caught under the influence while on the job must be astronomically higher than almost any other profession too. However, what is most shocking about the drug test failures within the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) is that there have been no serious punishments for their actions.

Following the uncovering from USA today, a post review of internal DEA discipline logs revealed there have been at least 16 reported instances of employees failing random drug tests for workplace testing since 2010.

While a number of these cases were handled administratively, with a few people choosing to resign or retire during the proceedings, none of the incidents ended in an employee being terminated. The DEA mostly punished employees with short suspensions with some being scandalously short at one or two days.

Their Drug & Alcohol Misuse Policy states that applicants who “experimented with or used narcotics or dangerous drugs, except those medically prescribed for [them], will not be considered for employment.” Which is enforced along with random drug testing conducted in the workplace throughout an employee’s career.

Carl Pike, a former DEA internal affairs investigator explained to USA Today that it was incredibly rare for someone to get fired for misconduct. He said: “If we conducted an investigation and an employee actually got terminated, I was surprised. I was truly surprised – like wow – the system actually got this guy.”

The DEA faces immense scrutiny in the wake of its handling of discipline following a string of high-profile scandals at the agency, not only involving drug tests.

Workplace Drug and Alcohol Testing

Rather than allowing drug and alcohol misuse to tarnish the reputation of your business it is important to put a robust Drug and Alcohol Misuse Policy in place that provides clear guidelines on what is expected of your employees and also to raise awareness of what the consequences of such misuse could be to employees at all levels.

It is not just important to have a solid stance on drug and alcohol misuse from a disciplinary point of view, it is also crucial that it is understood that it not only effects the employee themselves but also other employees, the business and the general public.

If you require more information on how drug and alcohol misuse has a detrimental effect on the workplace then please visit our Workplace Testing pages or our Business Services pages .

To take advantage of our workplace testing services, sample collection or if you would like a no obligation consultation then please contact our friendly customer service team on 0333 600 1300 or