Scalped and Tested

I finally received an offer letter from my company on Wednesday (i think, but it might have been Tuesday) to come on as a full time salaried employee. This is about 2-3 months overdue because of all the shenanigans and transition drama forced upon us by the division buy out by EDS. Becoming a full time employee is sort of exciting because now I get benefits even though I’ll be making a little bit less overall, mostly due to the fact that I won’t be getting overtime anymore.

Anyway, part of this whole hiring process involves a drug test. I’m not entirely ok with that for a number of reasons, but I do need the job and I can’t really refuse the test if I want to lose the stigma of the contractor role. So I was told where the testing place was and that its a walk-in clinic. I chose this morning to go and notified my team that I’d be coming into work late due to the test. As soon as I woke up this morning, I had to go to the bathroom really bad. Not thinking about it, I went. As I take my great sigh of relief at the end, it dawns on me that I was supposed to hold it for another couple hours for this test. I’m pretty sure if I had even waited a minute longer, nevermind a couple hours, I would have pissed my pants. After my shower, I drank as much water as I could, in the hopes I’d have to go by the time I got to the clinic.

When I get there, I arrive at the same time as the person who performs the tests. She was about ten minutes late coming in, so I happened to be on the elevator with her on the way down to the office. She goes to the door of the office and realizes she doesn’t have her keys. She told me to wait right there and she’d go get security to open it for her. Meanwhile, after she leaves, a short asian woman comes to the door asking if it was much longer til 9am, when they open. I told her what had happened. She then told me how badly she has to go to the bathroom and does the little ‘need to go to the bathroom’ dance.

Shortly, thereafter, a third woman comes in and we tell her whats going on. This woman tells us how nervous she is because she was there last week and couldn’t fill the cup, so she was told to come back in a week for another try. At some point, she also told us how her ex-husband was trying to get custody of their daughter and he was accusing her in court of being an alcoholic so that was her reason for having the drug test.

After about 20 minutes of waiting since I had last seen the testing lady, she finally returned with a small old man wearing a security jacket and holding some keys. Simply knowing that he was in charge of other’s well being put me at ease as his hands trembled and kept missing the keyhole in the doorknob. Once inside the asian woman begged to go ahead of me so she could fill her cup and get it over with. I had no where to go but to work, so I was certainly in no rush so I acquiesced. As soon as the third woman entered the room after us, she made a bee-line for the water cooler and started taking down water as though she had an invisible funnel.

As the testing woman finishes explaining everything to the asian woman the last thing I hear her say is ‘Remember not to flush the toilet when you are done.’ The testing woman then took me into the other office and sat me down and started explaining that she was going to cut some of my hair off and send it to a lab. Right about then we hear a toilet flushing and I can hear the testing woman mutter some obscenity under her breath, just before she carried on her explanation as though nothing happened. I was hoping I was in for a free haircut because, boy, did I need one! No such luck though. She cut off a few locks of hair from underneath so it wasn’t obvious I was missing some hair. Then she put it in some sort of foil holder thing, which in turn went inside an envelope that was sealed and that I had to initial. That was about it.

No urine sample or anything just like that, just hair. I would have preferred to give them a urine sample that my hair though. The urine is just my waste and they can get what they need from it, but my hair has my dna and this testing place is a dna testing lab. What is to stop them from doing other tests on it. How do I know they aren’t testing the likelihood I have some disease or something and maybe reselling that information to my insurance company? I know I’m paranoid, but in cases like this, I think its only helpful to be paranoid. The whole thing really bothers me and I don’t know if I’d do it again knowing what I know now.

I’ll find out that I passed on Tuesday, I believe.

4 thoughts on “Scalped and Tested

  1. only the ends of your hair have dna in it. if she cut the hair she has no dna.

    if she yanked it she did.

    Hair tells a far longer story than Urine does since what ever is in your body when your hair is growing is in your hair. so it will tell what you’ve been doing for a few weeks to a few months back.

  2. I still feel like its an invasion of privacy. It gives them far more raw data than they really need for what they are testing.

  3. People have already left because of it, but this is an ideal programming environment I think and I’d like to get as much experience in it as I can. I think I’m learning a lot.

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