P sees popularity jump among employees

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Employers in one scenic Bay of Plenty city could be forgiven for celebrating the Drug Detection Agency’s recent results – after all, figures show fewer workers are failing drug tests – but it seems the statistics have actually unearthed a worrying pattern of employee behaviour.

Last year, 6.54 per cent of all workplace drug tests in Rotorua were positive – it’s a significant decrease from 8.04 per cent the previous year but employers are still disappointed after results revealed methamphetamine is being detected in an increasing proportion of failed tests.

The data showed that 15.9 per cent of those who tested positive for drugs had used methamphetamine, up drastically from 6.5 per cent the previous year.

It also revealed that 87.5 per cent had used cannabis, up from 84 per cent the previous year. Conversely, the use of synthetic cannabis dropped from 4.5 per cent to one per cent.

Unsurprisingly, there’s an extensive list of signs and symptoms that could suggest someone is under the influence of methamphetamine, including increased energy, feelings of power or superiority over others, talkativeness, dilated pupils and restlessness.

According to the New Zealand Drug Foundation, there are also certain patterns of behaviour which could suggest a person has been using methamphetamine, even a few days ago.

“People coming down after using methamphetamine can experience feelings of exhaustion, irritability, mood swings, depression and violence,” advises the foundation. “These feelings are more pronounced after heavy, prolonged use, and can last up to several days after methamphetamine use has stopped.”

Nationwide, positive workplace drug tests increased slightly last year on the previous one from 6.14 per cent to 6.19 per cent. Methamphetamine showed up in 11.8 per cent of positive tests, up from 8.1 per cent in 2014.
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