British Airways has introduced a new drug and alcohol testing policy,
covering all UK-based staff from baggage handlers to managers.
The airline says the new policy, which comes into force on 1 August, is
aimed at improving efficiency and safety.
The move has been agreed by the four trade unions representing BA’s UK staff
– Amicus, the British Air Line Pilots Association, the Transport and General
Workers Union and the GMB.
Neil Robertson, BA’s director for people, said the unions had been instrumental
in constructing the revised policy.
There will also be more support available for employees who may have a
problem with drink or drugs and the airline is encouraging staff that need help
to come forward before the policy goes live.
The new policy was communicated to staff through the company’s internal
newsletter and e-mail circulars. Chief executive Rod Eddington also held
separate management briefings.
New employees can be randomly tested in the first six months, and anyone
returning to work after drug or alcohol rehabilitation can also be tested.
Testing is an addition to the airline’s existing policy that states staff
must not be impaired by drugs or alcohol while at work.