Beyond Vision

Alcohol in 5316 Building

Milwaukee Team,

Last fall, we had an employee meeting after some empty beer cans were found in the main building.  Unfortunately, within the past two weeks additional beer cans were again discovered in the main building.  Egon shared this information with the team in manufacturing during the Business Unit meeting last week.  And I’m following up with all Milwaukee employees with this electronic communication.

This is disturbing on several levels.   The biggest concern is employee safety.  Alcohol and our work environment do not mix well.  Forklifts, machinery, and a lack of space make safety challenging.  Adding in alcohol make it potentially dangerous.   As you all know, safety is among our seven core values at Beyond Vision.  We take great pride in our awesome safety record.   We do an exceptional job in keeping all of us safe,.  And we also help dispel the myth that people who are blind or visually impaired are a safety liability.   Someone’s behavior could be putting this at risk.   We also are concerned that a member of our team may have a serious problem with alcohol.    We care about everyone’s health and well-being.  This person may need help.

Jim Kerlin and I have started an investigation into these most recent incidents.  If anyone has any information about the beer cans, please talk with me or Jim.

As a refresher, below you will find Beyond Vision’s Drug & Alcohol policy.  Also, if you or someone you know may have an issue with alcohol or another substance, we encourage you to contact the confidential Employee Assistance Program at (800) 236-3231.

Best regards,


5.14 Drug-Free Workplace

5.14.1 Purpose & Goals

Beyond Vision recognizes that the widespread use of illegal drugs and alcohol in today’s society poses a very serious problem. Not only can the use and/or abuse of drugs or alcohol jeopardize the health, safety and well-being of the individual and all of our other employees, but it can also endanger the safety of the general public, cause accidents and injuries, adversely affect productivity and morale and contribute to excessive absenteeism and tardiness. Since our employees are our most valuable resource and the safety and well-being of our employees and the general public are of paramount concern to us, we have developed a drug and alcohol policy to help us contribute to the solution of this very difficult health, social and employment problem.

5.14.2 Covered Workers

Any individual who conducts business for Beyond Vision, is applying for a position, or is conducting business on the organization’s property is covered by our drug-free workplace policy. Our policy includes, but is not limited to the CEO, executive management, managers, supervisors, full-time employees, part-time employees, off-site employees, contractors and interns.

5.14.3 Prohibited Behavior

Beyond Vision strictly prohibits the use, sale, manufacture, transfer or possession of illegal drugs or alcohol on company premises and strictly prohibits any employee from being at work under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The off-duty use of illegal drugs is also prohibited. Any employee found in violation of this policy will be subject to discipline, including discharge.

5.14.4 Searches

The company reserves the right to carry out inspections at any time of an employee, an employee’s locker and any property the employee brings on to the company’s premises, including the company’s parking lot. Employees’ vehicles parked on the company’s premises are also subject to inspection.

5.14.5 Definitions

  1. Drugs. For the purpose of this policy, the term “drugs” refers to the controlled substances included in Schedules I through V of Section 812 of Title 21 of the United States Code. The term “drugs” does not mean the use of a controlled substance pursuant to a valid prescription.
  2. Under the Influence.
  3. For the purpose of this policy, an employee shall be deemed to be “under the influence” of drugs if a test for the presence of drugs in the employee’s system results in a positive finding of the presence of any drug. The term “positive finding” means a determination, by the laboratory selected by Beyond Vision to conduct the drug test that the sample tested contains a drug in a sufficient concentration so that it is reported by the laboratory as a positive result.
  4. For the purpose of this policy, an employee shall be deemed to be “under the influence” of alcohol if a properly conducted test to determine the blood alcohol concentration of the employee results in a finding that, at the time of the test, the blood alcohol concentration of the employee was equal to or greater than 0.04% by weight of alcohol in the employee’s blood. Beyond Vision may also determine that an employee is “under the influence” of alcohol for purposes of this policy based on other information, evidence, conduct or behavior.
  5. Reasonable Suspicion. “Reasonable suspicion” as used herein is a suspicion based upon the conduct (including without limitation productivity, work habits, behavior, and attitude), speech, odor or appearance of an employee sufficient to lead a prudent person to suspect that the employee may be under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

5.14.6 Drug Testing

In order that the drug and alcohol policy of Beyond Vision can be adequately enforced and thereby eliminate the serious safety risks associated with drugs or alcohol in the workplace, employees shall be subject to testing for alcohol or drugs in their system in the following circumstances:

  1. When a supervisor or manager of an employee has a reasonable suspicion that an employee may be under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  2. Following an accident or incident in which safety precautions were violated or careless acts were performed or which resulted in an accident (bodily injury to any peson or property damage to equipment) that may have been caused by or related to an employee’s use of drugs or alcohol.

Beyond Vision may at its discretion require employees to submit to alcohol and drug testing at other times and occasions than those discussed above.

When an employee is requested to submit to a test for drugs or alcohol, the employee will be requested to execute a written consent form under the terms of which the employee gives the company and/or its selected health care provider permission to obtain specimens for testing for the presence of drugs or alcohol. If the employee refuses to give consent to testing or otherwise fails to cooperate in any way with the testing procedure, the employee shall be subject to immediate discharge.

In the event the test for drugs or alcohol reveals that the employee is under the influence of a drug or alcohol, as defined above, the employee shall be discharged. Thereafter, if the individual successfully completes a reputable rehabilitation program, he or she may reapply and be considered for employment with the company. The individual’s participation in a drug or alcohol rehabilitation program shall be voluntary on the part of the individual and shall be at the individual’s expense. At the time of applying for re-employment, the individual must provide the company with evidence of successful completion of a rehabilitation program which shall consist of a statement by a physician that the individual has successfully completed a rehabilitation program and is able to perform the job for which he or she is applying in a productive and safe manner. The individual, if rehired within 160 days of the individual’s employment termination with the company, will be given credit for prior service with the company for purposes of the company’s PTO policy. Further, the individual shall be subject to random testing for a twelve-month period after re-employment. As a condition of re-employment, the individual shall give written consent to four random tests during the twelve-month period. If during the twelve-month period a test result demonstrates that the employee is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the employee shall be discharged without eligibility for rehire.

Beyond Vision has a different drug testing policy that applies to employees working in Minnesota. Employees in Minnesota should contact the Human Resources Department for further information.

5.14.7 Assistance

Beyond Vision recognizes that alcohol and drug abuse and addiction are treatable conditions. We also realize that early intervention and support improve the success of rehabilitation. To support our employees, Beyond Vision:

  • Encourages employees to seek help if they are concerned that they or their family members may have a drug and/or alcohol problem.
  • Encourages employees to utilize the services of qualified professionals in the community to assess the seriousness of suspected drug or alcohol problems and identify appropriate sources of help.
  • Offers all employees and their family members assistance with alcohol and drug problems through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP).
  • Allows the use of accrued paid leave while seeking treatment for alcohol and other drug problems.
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