Nicotine Free New Hire Policy
Frequently Asked Questions
Is screening for tobacco/nicotine use legal?
Yes. Users of nicotine are not in a legally protected class. Non-nicotine hiring policies have been adopted by companies in Michigan and in other states.
How are applicants tested for nicotine?
Applicants will be tested after an offer of employment has been extended. The testing is part of the urine drug screen done at the time of the pre-employment physical. Nicotine test results are on a pass/fail basis.
If any applicant fails the screening for nicotine, can he/she reapply for employment?
At the pre-employment interview, a candidate is requested to sign a statement declaring they are nicotine free and can abide by a nicotine free work environment. A candidate also has the option on this statement of declaring if they are using any type of nicotine replacement therapy. If the presence of nicotine is detected in the candidate’s system, the candidate may reapply in 90 days for available positions.
Does the Tobacco/Nicotine Free Hiring Policy impact current employees?
No, not at this time.
Why the focus on tobacco/nicotine?
Mercy Memorial is creating a culture where employees actively engage each other in living a healthy and productive lifestyle. Mercy Memorial is in the business of health care and has a responsibility to its employees and to the greater Monroe area to lead the charge and to promote health and well-being in the community.
What could cause a positive nicotine result on the screening?
Any substance that contains nicotine will produce a positive result. In addition to cigarettes, this would include chewing tobacco, snuff, nicotine patch, nicotine gum, cigars, etc.
Does second hand smoke produce a positive result?
When testing for nicotine, the lab has built in levels that would take into account the possibility of second hand smoke. Therefore, a positive result will mean the individual who tested positive is a tobacco/nicotine user.
I am currently trying to quit, will I be hired?
Unfortunately no. The use of the patch or other cessation tools will generate a positive test and thus nullify any job offer.
If a current employee terminates employment and then re-applies, will they be subject to the new screening?
Yes, anyone completing the pre-employment physical process on or after December 3, 2012 will be tested for nicotine.