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Louisiana Employers May Use Hair To Test For Drugs

Louisiana employers now can drug test employees’ hair samples, thanks to a recent amendment to the State’s drug testing statute.

Signed by Governor Bobby Jindal on June 5, 2015, House Bill 379 closes an 18 year-old loophole in Louisiana’s drug testing law, which permitted employers to drug test hair specimens (in addition to blood, saliva and urine), but did not authorize any laboratories to actually process the results of hair testing.   Prior to the recent amendment, employers were required to use only laboratories certified by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (“SAMHSA”) or the College of American Pathologists/Forensic Urine Drug Testing for all employee drug testing.  As neither certification allows for the testing of hair specimens, employers were de facto prohibited from hair testing.  (Click here to read our recent blog on SAMSHA’s solicitation of comments on hair testing for drugs).

House Bill 379 amends the law to allow employers to use laboratories certified for forensic hair drug testing by the College of American Pathologists.  The law went into effect immediately.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2021National Law Review, Volume V, Number 163
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About this Author

Kathryn J. Barry, Jackson Lewis, contractor defense lawyer, discrimination allegations attorney
Associate

Kathryn Barry is an Associate in the Long Island, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. She advises clients on compliance with various state and federal laws affecting the workplace, including Title VII, Family and Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Fair Labor Standards Act and New York State and City laws.

Ms. Barry also assists federal contractors in the preparation of affirmative action plans and defends contractors against allegations of discrimination on the basis...

(631) 247-0404
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