The Effects of Employer Drug Testing on Labor Market Outcomes
Early Career Research Award
In the 1980’s, U.S. employers began requiring drug tests of their employees and job applicants on a large scale. While this increase in testing represents a large intervention into the U.S. labor market, the effects of this intervention had not yet been evaluated on a market-wide scale. This study examines the impact of widespread employer drug testing from the perspective of the labor market as a whole. It analyzes whether testing changed the sort of drug users and non-users across sectors of employment, and whether testing itself altered relative labor market outcomes. Data from the Current Population Survey spanning 1980 – 1999 are used.