Hard News by Russell Brown

Read Post

Hard News: Drugs, testing and workplaces

115 Responses

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 5 Newer→ Last

  • bob daktari,

    I guess businesses like the Drug Detection Agency are the obvious result of the free market seeing easy money to be made... hell its tempting to take their Franchisee discovery tour

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    New Zealand Rugby and other employers might be better served by treating drug use the way they do (or should) alcohol use: be aware of problematic use, test for actual impairment, counsel

    Exactly - my partner worked in the rail industry for over fifty years, but management and unions put a lot of time and effort into coming up with drug/alcohol policies beyond just randomly flinging around piss cups.

    And, yes, that included "culture change" Kiwirail management having beer fridges & drinks cabinets removed from offices, on the sensible grounds that it really wasn't a good look while elsewhere drinking on the job would be grounds for dismissal.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    And, yes, that included “culture change” Kiwirail management having beer fridges & drinks cabinets removed from offices, on the sensible grounds that it really wasn’t a good look while elsewhere drinking on the job would be grounds for dismissal.

    Nice one. A gesture, but a meaningful one.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    The Standard pitches in.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Some useful commentary from Norml's Chris Fowlie, who notes that the forestry industry has enthusiastically embraced drug-testing for years without improving its record, suggesting that the key to the problem lies elsewhere.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Gregor Ronald,

    "...drug-testing was a good way to lose the race for talent..." This also applies to the ski industry. Zealous management at a major US resort implemented testing several years ago, and they couldn't get enough staff to work the chairlifts and cafes. They did some fast talking and wound back the testing, and all was well. (Staff weren't stoned at work, but cannabis stays in the system for a long time, especially in a party town.)

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 103 posts Report Reply

  • Maxine Campbell,

    Hamilton • Since Dec 2006 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Brown,

    'Anecdata' is a great word.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2013 • 137 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    franchising lawyer, an accountant, a professional director, a toxicologist and Christie

    WTF!

    Ok a public service announcement is needed - if you ever see a board with this structure run away, don't walk, don't pause just run.

    How does Christie have any credibility as anything now??

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    Which brings us to Prime Minister Bill English's anecdata yesterday about employers who tell him they have trouble finding prospective employees who can pass a drug test. He

    LIED:

    fixed that for you.

    Seriously, our PM told a bald-faced lie. And nobody in the media was willing to say that.

    People wonder how Trump gets away with such atrocious lies - this is how. Because our media is too ... er ... polite to call out the prime minister when he lies.

    We let the little fudges slip by and next thing a million and a half people are cheering in the bright sunshine.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Tinakori,

    "He

    LIED:"

    Really? How do you know. Are you a mole in English's entourage who monitored his each and every encounter?

    Politicians - left right and middle - circulate widely in our communities and get told stuff by people of every political persuasion, including the politically agnostic. When they get told stuff repeatedly they start to think there might be something to the claims.

    It is also a common claim, especially in the regions.

    The substance of the claim may be true, partly true or baseless but I very much doubt that English or any other politician would say that employers were telling him this if they were not.

    David Shearer's clumsy claim about the honourable Rufus Painter is the exception that proves the rule.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2013 • 118 posts Report Reply

  • Daniel Wilton,

    There was an interesting theme in yesterday's news, firstly in the morning the character of those requiring emergency accommodation was severely attacked as they were all lumped into the group of being problem cases who were the worst of the worst.

    Then the pivot from record immigration to people are failing drug test some we need to import the labour.

    This demonising of people who are in need of help is troubling.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2009 • 54 posts Report Reply

  • John Farrell, in reply to Tinakori,

    So the employers lied to English, then?

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 496 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Maxine Campbell,

    And this response to an OIA shows a rate of just 0.017 for beneficiaries in 2015.

    It came out to 0.17% of clients for me. What a crisis!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Worik,

    Nice article. Hideous problem When a person's quality is judged by a urine sample...

    Waitati • Since Jan 2017 • 9 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to John Farrell,

    So the employers lied to English, then?

    It seems like the kind of anecdote that gains weight through repeated bitching.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Tinakori,

    I very much doubt that English or any other politician would say that employers were telling him this if they were not.

    Which is exactly my point. You doubt he lied. You can't bring yourself to believe anything else. You want to trust him because, well, he's the PM.

    But let's flip this around a moment. You're the Prime Minister. You represent all New Zealanders, even those who didn't vote for you. You get told something by some employers. Something that with about 5 seconds of rational thought seems pretty far fetched.

    Now do you
    A) send your staff away to find out the actual numbers so that if there really is a problem with job applicants failing drug tests you get the facts straight. It is after all quite a scary claim - saying most or even lots of young job applicants are failing drug tests.

    or B) Just repeat said claim without any fact check at all.

    Now I don't think Bill English is an idiot and frankly, in that job, you'd have to be a complete idiot to choose option B. So I'm going to go with option A.

    And that means when he decided to make that claim he knew it was false, he knew that what those employers said to him was false.

    Now technically he might just get away with saying "I only repeated what they were saying and not that he believed it himself".

    But that's the kind is bollocks you expect from a five year old - not THE PRIME MINISTER.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Martin Brown,

    ‘Anecdata’ is a great word.

    Meanwhile the rest of the 'silver surfer' cohort struggle towards the light as we enter our 'anecdotage'....
    I remember (I hope) when...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7943 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    Attachment

    Compared to:

    the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) scheme in the horticulture and viticulture industries, which was increased to 9,500 workers in 2015/16 from 9,000 the previous year.

    Compared to:

    140,000 unemployed people in New Zealand

    In Lusk country – who incidentally might be out hunting today by the sounds of things – you’d be just as likely to hear employers complain about Health and Safety gone mad, forcing them to test and discipline people who are often times doing very safe menial labour – e.g. grading fruit? Test those drugs: nosey dogs and the ritual of golden chalice.

    A character turned up hungover one day, sent home. Those others – trouble – caught smoking a reefer; sent home for days, like maybe 2, then allowed back to work, because doing stuff with picked fruit.

    Not a lot of white faces at the packhouse, but then, no dark faces at the mayoral debate.

    Some 2012 stats

    ● 49.3 percent of first-time RSE workers return in the next season and
    most(86.9 percent)return to the same employer
    ● Over half (54.4 percent) of all RSE workers have returned at least once to work in another season– but the pattern of return varies between source countries.

    ● In the 2010/11 season (the fourth season), 62.1 percent of RSE workers were returning workers

    ● 60 percent of workers from the first season (2007/08) have returned to work at least one other season

    ● 23 percent of workers from the first season (just over 1,000 workers) have participated in all four seasons

    ● Over the first three seasons, 90 percent of RSE workers’ employment duration was between 3–7 months

    ● The mean earnings over the first three seasons ranged from $12,840 in the 2007/08 season to $12,630 in the 2009/10 season

    Business as usual Bill.
    Blame it on the natives.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    But that's the kind is bollocks you expect from a five year old - not THE PRIME MINISTER.

    Correct.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2932 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Gregor Ronald,

    This also applies to the ski industry.

    A company I shan't name tried to bring in drug testing for their theatrical technicians a couple of years ago. I was talking to the guy who was going to have to enforce it, and hated the idea, and knew that a lot of their workers, while not impaired, wouldn't pass. On my suggestion, he suggested they get in touch with a company like Ora and look at doing impairment testing instead which, as it turned out, they were not at all interested in. They didn't want to know if their workers were impaired. In this guy's opinion, they wanted to be able to
    - tell people they were doing drug testing
    - have a handy reason to sack "problematic" workers who were doing their jobs just fine thanks.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    when he decided to make that claim he knew it was false, he knew that what those employers said to him was false.

    Joyce and comms staff will have been in charge of the line-making. English just delivers what he has been told to, like his predecessor did.

    No doubt *some* employers have said this to him so it's true for them. Subsequently exaggerating the scale of the matter to avoid talking about the real problems is the sort of lying that politics abounds in. Not quite as bad as Trump's "the sky is green"-type nonsense but corrosive of public trust over time.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • andin, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    How does Christie have any credibility as anything now??

    Amazing where money and being one-eyed(focus is the buzzword for that)can get you these days

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1890 posts Report Reply

  • Moz, in reply to Emma Hart,

    they wanted to be able to ... have a handy reason to sack "problematic" workers

    That's been my observation. The one company I've been at that introduced this had an all-staff meeting to explain it. When I suggested that we randomly draw names from a hat, or throw dice to generate employee numbers there was a distinct mumbling and shuffling before I was told the suggestion wouldn't work and they were going to "guess" who should be tested because that's what the drug company recommended. I suggested that as a gesture of good faith one of the five senior managers should be included in every round. Nope. My job was safe, I was just making them stand up at the staff meeting and make it clear that they were targeting specific people.

    The rugby thing just smells like arse-covering to me. "be seen to do something".

    Sydney, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 1229 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov, in reply to andin,

    Scales.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 5 Newer→ Last

Post your response…

Please sign in using your Public Address credentials…

Login

You may also create an account or retrieve your password.