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Frequently Asked Questions
FAQ on DOLE Department Order 5303

Q. Is mandatory or random drug testing a violation of human rights?

  • Although there are questions being raised on the constitutionality of mandatory and random drug testing, as long as the Supreme Court has not decided on this issue, the Law stands as it is.

Q. Are expatriates and foreigners employed in a local company covered by the Order?

  • They are included in the Order.

Q. What is “for just cause”? Are companies required to implement “for cause” drug testing?

  • The Law requires only random drug testing. However, it is an option for companies to implement testing for justified causes such as part of accident investigation or as testing to follow-up workers who already underwent treatment and rehabilitation.

Q. What if an officer or a worker was caught in illegal possession of dangerous drugs? What penalties can a company impose?

  • Illegal possession is a criminal act. The Law has provisions to deal with these circumstances. The company policy should clearly state the sanctions for these types of offenses.

Q. A company has already its own drug abuse policy but is not in consonance with the Order. The company terminates all those found to be positive for drug use the first time. Is the company required to revise its policy?

  • The Department Order is part of the bigger Law, the Republic Act 9165. Any ordinances, orders, and company policies that is not in consonance with the Law should be revised.

Q. How will confidentiality be assured within a company?

  • Confidentiality of drug test results and treatment and rehabilitation should be maintained on a “need to know basis”. The company policy should include sanctions for any intentional violation of confidentiality of records.

Q. If a worker is referred for rehabilitation, is he/she entitled to leave benefits?

  • The grant of leave benefits will also depend on the agreement of employers and workers.

Q. Are companies allowed or required to require job applicants to undergo mandatory drug testing as part of their requirement? Who will shoulder the expenses?

  • It is the prerogative of the company if they would require job applicants to undergo drug testing. However, it is encouraged that the companies require only short-listed candidates to lessen the financial burden on the applicants.

Q. Can a company conduct  its own the screening tests?

  • The company can conduct its own screening test as long as it is accredited by the Department of Health. However, many prefer third-party service providers to avoid technical legalities that may arise.

Q. What if a worker/officer refuses to undergo random drug testing? What sanctions can be imposed on the worker/officer?

  • Refusal to undergo drug testing is tantamount to refusal to follow company rules and regulations. The worker may be guilty of insubordination and may be dealt with other pertinent policies of the company.

Q. What sanctions await companies which do not have drug abuse policies and programs?

  • At present, the DOLE has no sanctions for companies who refuse to formulate and implement policies and programs. However, some local government units are implementing a “NO POLICY, NO BUSINESS PERMIT” ordinance to supplement existing laws.
  • The Order will be included in the ongoing review of Occupational Safety and Health Standards.

Q. Who will shoulder the rehabilitation and treatment of first time offenders?

  •  The treatment and rehabilitation expenses will depend on the agreement of the management and workers. Some companies prefer cost-sharing arrangements.

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Unit 504 Park Trade Center, 1716 Investment Drive,
Madrigal Business Park, Ayala Alabang, Muntinlupa City,
+63 (2) 809-4847, 809-8776
+63 (933) 474-7714
Brgy. Neogan, Aguinaldo Highway,
Tagaytay City, PHILIPPINES
+63 (932) 849-5712
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