New Zealand: New focus on drug testing

Some of Northland's largest organisations are tightening up their drug testing policies for staff amid stricter workplace regulations amid news the region's rate of failed employee drug tests after workplace incidents is more than double the national average.

Glenn Dobson, group general manager of the New Zealand Drug Detection Agency (NZDDA), which operates a branch in Whangarei, said its most recent figures showed 13.4 per cent of post-incident tests in Northland returned an indication of drugs against the national average of 6.4 per cent.

The region's lead drug detection agency also revealed that during random testing in Northland in 2014, 8.6 per cent of employees returned an indication of drugs present, against a national average of 5.3 per cent.

Not surprisingly, given Northland's status as the cannabis capital of New Zealand, marijuana was the most frequent drug detected in the workplace in the region, followed by methamphetamine.

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