Red and Watery Eyes, Slurred Speech, Dorito Crumbs and Other Red Flags: New Legal Challenges to Drug and Alcohol Testing

SHRM 2015 Annual Conference
Workplace Application: You will review trends in drug and alcohol testing and learn steps you can take to keep your workplace safe.
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With the legalization of recreational use of marijuana in four states, the move to decriminalize marijuana in others and the widespread acceptance of medical marijuana, you are faced with new challenges to drug testing and workplace safety policy enforcement. Additionally, the misuse of prescription drugs and alcohol continues to account for workplace accidents and injuries, as well as attendance and job performance problems. Federal and state discrimination and privacy laws can shield medication information from employers that are already worried about “perceived as disabled” and other claims. This session will provide an overview of current laws, review workplace trends in drug and alcohol testing, identify legal pitfalls to avoid, and highlight affirmative steps you can take to keep your workplace safe and functioning properly.

Date(s) & Time(s): 
Tuesday, June 30, 2015 - 4:00pm to 5:15pm

James Reidy, Esq.

Reidy, Esq.

James (Jim) P. Reidy is a shareholder at Sheehan Phinney Bass & Green PA in Manchester, N.H., where he is the chair of the firm’s Labor and Employment Practice Group. He earned his B.A. from Assumption College, his M.P.A. from Northeastern University and his J.D. from New England School of Law. He has extensive experience handling matters before the N.H. Department of Labor, the N.H. Commission for Human Rights, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the U.S. Department of Labor. Jim is admitted to practice in New Hampshire, Massachusetts and before the First Circuit Court of Appeals. He is a member of the American Bar Association and the New Hampshire Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Section. Jim is the Manchester Area Human Resource Association vice president of legal and legislative affairs, former legislative affairs vice president for the New Hampshire State (HR) Council, a member of the N.H. Business and Industry Association, chair of the N.H. Tech Alliance's HR Exchange, moderator of NHLABORNET and editor of the New England Employment Law Letter. Jim writes, lectures and presents seminars on a wide range of employment law topics. He has been a media resource on workplace law for media outlets including CNN, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times’ business magazine, Bloomberg, WMUR, NPR, The Associated Press, NPR Marketplace, BuzzFeed, Law 360, Inc., “The HR Power Hour,” “HR Break Room,” SKI magazine and HR Magazine as well as several local publications. Best Lawyers USA named Jim the 2020 Lawyer of the Year for labor and employment law (Manchester), and the NH Business Review named him one of the top 200 most influential business leaders in New Hampshire. Most recently, Jim was inducted as a Fellow into the American Bar Association College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.

Amount of Credit: 
Credit Type: 
HR Credit
Session Type: 
Concurrent Session
HR Expertise
Critical Evaluation
Intended Audience: 
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