Drug Use

  • At home and in the Schools

  • In the Workplace

  • Department of Labor Data

Home and Schools

Besides drugs that are illegal in themselves, society today has to deal with illegally obtained and used prescription drugs.  Today, some of the more popular illegally obtained prescription drugs include Oxycodone, Percocets, Vicodin, all of which are Opiate-based.

Drug use continues to be a major problem among the children in our schools.

As the chart below shows, a federally funded study, conducted by the University of Michigan, shows that illegal drugs are easily obtainable to our students.  One will note that marijuana is felt to be the easiest drug to get.

Many may dismiss marijuana as a minor drug issue, but when one looks into to effects and long term possible problems associated with marijuana use, it becomes clear that this easily obtained drug is a problem in itself.

When a child in many school systems is found with illegal drugs, an arrest is soon to follow.  Many parents are forced to deal with:

Zero Tolerance in many school systems

Expulsion from normal public schools

Placed in alternative schools – loss of scholarships

Arrested & Prosecuted

Attorney Fees

Permanent criminal record

Constant  tension

Counseling fees

Stress, anger, and mistrust

Many of these issues may be avoided by a confidential in-home DrugWipe® drug test. For example, a test may be scheduled on a Monday after the parents get back from a trip away from home and the student is at school.  If the test comes back negative, there may be no reason to confront the child.

Drug Use in the Workplace

Business losses can be categorized many ways such as:

  • Theft

  • Damage

  • Diversion

  • Accidents

  • Loss Time away from work

  • Sickness

  • Administrative and disciplinary actions

  • Low Productivity, errors, re-work and losses due to violent behavior

  • Compensation payments for injuries

Additionally, the Executive Office of the President’s Office of National Drug Control Policy has estimated that the financial cost of drug use in industry costs the United States BILLIONS of dollars.

There are also many losses that are directly related to a lesser-known condition called drug impairment.   Impairment is not well known as a cause of business loss because it is not easily identified by physical or behavior signs.   The reporting of suspected drug impairment may be suppressed due to work group pressures.  Impairment in the workplace is a hazard and brings with it increased risk of business loss.

Conducting DrugWipe® tests can detect the residue that results from workplace use/consumption and/or drug trafficking.   Detecting and identifying the illegal drug residue begins the process of quantifying and localizing the risk.

Impairment involves both the physical as well as mental capacities of personnel.   Impairment may be observed directly or many be evidenced in statistical measurements of the workplace processes such as error rate or productivity rate. 

  • Directly observed Impairment from drugs may be observed in one or more of the following categories:

  • Lack of coordination: Inability to perform acts or arrange items in the proper relative order.

  • Constricted Pupils: Narrowing or compressing of the pupil of the eye.

  • Blackout: Temporary, but not necessarily total loss of consciousness.  Forgetfulness of events occurring over periods of time also constitutes a blackout.

  • Bloodshot or watery eyes: Extreme reddening of: or water-filled over, eyes.  May also have a glassy-like film over eyes.

  • Sleepy or stuporous condition: Dazed or confused look or reaction to an otherwise normal situation.  e.g. not recognizing a familiar object or individual.  Lethargic.  Mental or physical inactivity.  Lack of emotion, feeling, or enthusiasm to things generally found exciting or interesting.

  • Aggressive or antagonistic behavior: Hostile behavior.  e.g. physical fights, loud verbal, abusive conversations.

  • Slurred Speech: Indistinct, incoherent word pronunciation.  e.g. nonsense-sounding syllables and/or sentences during a conversation

  • Slowed reaction rate: Delayed stimulus response to circumstances or events e.g. non-instantaneous, startled reaction to a loud, unexpected, frightening noise.

  • Dulled mental processes: Not very alert or responsive.  Lacking mental agility.

Department of Labor Data

  • More than 6% of the population over 12 years of age (13.9 million people) has used drugs within the past thirty days.  Rates of use remain highest among persons aged 16 to 25 -the age group entering the work force most rapidly.
  • More than 60% (sixty percent) of adults know people who have gone to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports a significant difference in drug use between employees working for companies utilizing a pre-employment drug test versus those employed by companies without one.

A study focusing on findings from the 2002 through 2004 National Household Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) reported that --

  • 9.4 million (8.2%) of full-time workers were illicit drug users
  • 57.5% of illicit drug users, aged 18 to 64, were employed full-time
  • Nearly one out of five (19%) workers aged 18 to 25 used illicit drugs during the past month. This was a higher percentage than among the 26 to 34 (10.3%), 35 to 49 (7%), and 50 to 64 (2.6%) age groups.

Drug testing

  • A total of 32 million (29.6%) of full-time workers in the United States reported random drug testing in their current employment setting during the study period.

  • For each age group, past month illicit drug users were less likely than nonusers to report working for employers who conducted prehire drug or alcohol tests; ages 18 to 25 (29.4 vs. 41.3%); 26 to 34 (32.0 vs. 45.8%), 35 to 49 (34.2 vs. 45.5%), and 50 to 64 (31.3 vs. 41%).


  • Illicit drug use among full-time employees were most prevalent in food preparation and serving-related occupations (17.4%), followed by construction and extraction occupations (15.1%).

  • Among full-time workers, those in protective services occupations were least likely to be illicit drug users (3.4%).

Source: U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, SAMHSA, Office of Applied Studies, Worker Substance Use and Workplace Policies and Programs. DHHS Publication No. (SMA) 07-4273, Analytic Series A-29, Rockville, MD, 2007.

In 2009, the Florida Legislature revised Florida State Statute 440.102, the Florida Drug Free Workplace Law, removing the requirement that an employer's "initial drug test" be conducted at a certified lab.  This change now allows DrugWipe® to be used as an employer's "initial drug test"; no more waiting for 7-14 days to get the test results, no more handling someone's urine to test; no more opportunities for a suspect employee to manipulate the drug test.  






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