The government is working on new regulations that will allow employers to test the sobriety of workers. Attorney Paweł Krzykowski commented on the proposed changes for Puls Biznesu.
Our expert pointed out that:
a) Labour law experts have been urging to enable employers to test the sobriety of workers for a long time, so an attempt to regulate this issue should be considered as a step in the right direction.
b) Introducing this regulation may ensure a higher level of safety for employees and customers of numerous companies and institutions.
c) So far, this issue has been subject to different interpretations, also in court judgments.
For example, one of the courts expressed the opinion that the sobriety of employees cannot be controlled by security workers or other persons authorised by the employer, but only by the competent authority dedicated to protecting public order (e.g. a Police officer, or a municipal/city guard member). On the other hand, another judgment stated that, in the case of a bus driver, it seems obvious that undergoing preventive sobriety tests should be considered as one of the basic duties of an employee (with respect to sobriety tests at a bus depot).
Mr Krzykowski also commented on the issue of personal data protection. He emphasised that, in the opinion of the Personal Data Protection Office, under the existing regulations only authorities dedicated to protect public order were authorised to test sobriety.
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