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Americans Want Cops Tested to See if THEY are on Drugs – Cops Say It’s “Unconstitutional”

Lisa Rough | Leafly

In an incredibly backwards display of irony, the union representing the Pittsburgh police has filed a most unusual lawsuit. A civil rights grievance has been filed against the city, claiming that officers being required to undergo mandatory drug testing is not only a violation of their contract but of the Constitution as well.




Curiously enough, it appears that this unconstitutionality only applies to police officers, not to the public that they are meant to protect and serve. The officers’ argument is that a urine drug analysis constitutes an “illegal search and seizure,” and police would be forced to “forfeit their constitutional rights to protect the city from a civil liability.”

Officers may be subjected to drug testing in three circumstances:

  • If an officer is suspected of being under the influence on the job;
  • If an officer fires their weapon;
  • If the officer is involved in a car crash.


The lawsuit arose as a result of a car chase and crash on Baum Boulevard. As the officers were involved in the car chase that led to the car crash, both were ordered to submit to testing.

Pittsburgh Police Chief Cameron McLay contends that the contract allows the squad to test officers involved in pursuit, regardless of whether or not they were involved in the crash.

Workplace drug testing, particularly unwarranted drug testing, is certainly a hot-button issue, and one for which constitutionality can easily become a concern.

Some might say that if you have nothing to hide, why object to drug testing at all? Truly, what it comes down to is a right to privacy and a right to be left alone, according to the National Workrights Institute.




Drug testing can be a degrading process in and of itself. It involves an embarrassing bodily function and may even require the employee to strip in the presence of an observer to prevent cheating. Additionally, the analysis of a urine test may be more revealing than simply the presence or absence of drugs, as it could disclose personal medical information about the employee being tested.

A big problem with drug tests is that they’re not a measure of job performance.

In fact, even if the employee being tested is under suspicion of impairment, the test cannot measure how recently a drug was used and, therefore, cannot be considered wholly reliable. This is particularly relevant when it comes to drug testing for cannabis.

–> Continue reading full article. 



About author

Filming Cops
Filming Cops 1910 posts

Filming Cops was started in 2010 as a conglomerative blogging service documenting police abuse. The aim isn’t to demonize the natural concept of security provision as such, but to highlight specific cases of State-monopolized police brutality that are otherwise ignored by traditional media outlets.

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  • Oh no, it’s Mitch

    FIRST!! I’m going out on a limb here, but I am guessing the same libdicks that want Police tested ar the same ones who squeal like the proverbial pig when it gets suggested that welfare recipients should be drug tested before they collect their “free money” checks.

    • Frostbitten

      Well, you guessed entirely wrong then. Congratulations, idiot. Red herrings don’t always work in your favor.

      • Oh no, it’s Mitch

        You make such a …compelling argument, that I may just have to reverse my view in this. Nope. I’m good, thank you for playing.

        • Where’s your evidence? Thanks for playing and losing at your own game.

    • David Hewitt

      Hope that limb breaks! God damn I’m sick of rednecks, bigots and ignoramuses!

      • Oh no, it’s Mitch

        Oh yeah but brainic libabsurd “progressives” such as yourself are a great boon to our society.

        • That’s a nice computer you are using created by a ‘brainic’….you are a fantastic representation of what is wrong with our world today.

        • David Hewitt

          Yeah that’s right. Hey remember when you were a kid and that one bully kid who never had anything of value to say…. but would make fun of your name or something equally inane? Fast forward to adulthood and here we are! And notice how this is essentially what ‘conservatards’ (there! I did it!) have been reduced to? BTW, progressives don’t call you names (usually) because they actually feel bad about telling you something that is so painfully true and obvious (you are stupid and that’s not intended as an insult; just an observation). When you insult us… meh! It doesn’t mean anything. I think progressives and intellectuals have been ‘too nice’ for too long. We all know who the idiots are. Now, get them out from behind the wheel!

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            “Progressives” and libs don’t call us names? Oh you are precious. I have been called every name in the book by your kind. I’ve been called names I didn’t even know were names.
            Truthfully? I could care less about drug testing of the dead beats. As long as there are Libabsurds, there will always be work capable women who would rather keep pooting out rugrats and collecting checks than work. There will always be illegal aliens with their little ANCHOR BABIES who will get their “free” money while people like you and me do actual work.There will always be baby daddies who move between stupid women that they won’t marry. I know that the drug testing hasn’t and probably won’t work. But to hear you folks tell it, Cops are killing or beating someone 24/7. Statistically there are over 900,000 police and deputies in this country. By liberal accounts there should be hundreds of cop killings per day. After all, according to one commenter, pretty much every cop is totally out of control. Which is odd, since you never hear of cop killings and beatings in the city I live in. If it’s ALL cops, it should be happening in my town too. Right?

          • David Hewitt

            Calling you ‘stupid’ or ‘ignorant’ is not calling you names. Calling someone ‘libasurd’ is. I’m giving you my honest opinion and you’re acting like a 12-year-old.

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            But my honest opinion is that Liberals are absurd, hence: libabsurd. Let me give you a for instance: libabsurds maintain the cop “system” is out of control. The Washington Post (as liberal a rag as there is out there) in a year long study, tallied 965 police killings,as published on 12/26. Of those,564 that were killed were armed with a gun. 281 were armed with some other type of weapon. So 845 out of 965 were armed suspects or 88%.UNARMED BLACK MEN accounted for LESS THAN 4%. But to hear Liberals tell it, hundreds of UNARMED black men are just being whole sale slaughtered by the police. Liberal logic that is absurd, hence libabsurd. Does that shoe fit you?

          • David Hewitt

            And I think you lack knowledge, wisdom and talent. Progressives tend to be more knowledgeable and FAR more talented (because art IS progress). I accept that you think I’m ‘absurd’ but I’d advise you against making up words like ‘libtard’, ‘libasurd’, etc… because THEY SOUND RIDICULOUS. That’s why you hardly ever hear the word ‘conservatard’. We’ve got much better ammunition on our side. :)

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            Whatever helps you sleep in your big ol mansion.

          • David Hewitt

            You have no interest in knowing anything. Once again you prove my point: that YOU are the problem with our country (you and people like you). You live in a bubble that is part ego and part cult. ‘Libabsurds’ are generally passive and tolerant people… so they honor your bubble. But now there’s Donald Trump (a Hitler wannabe)… so as a society, we can no longer afford to respect your bubble, boy. We’re gonna pop that bubble and it’s going to be uncomfortable for a while! 😉

          • David Hewitt

            And yes, we could have ‘agreed to disagree’ a long time ago on my basic assertion vs. your own: that the system is corrupt from top to bottom and must be overhauled (IOW, ‘out of control’). I can accept that you don’t agree with that. I cannot accept your staggering overconfidence!

          • smrnda

            You should check out the guardian. Most stats on police shootings are voluntary, so many of these numbers aren’t getting into official records. The guardian (british publication) has covered the issue on this side of the pond.

            Also – people who are not liberals oppose the police state. Conservatives (at least some) know that much of police conduct violated the constitutional rights of citizens. Libertarians aren’t fond of the police state either.

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            “…many of these stats aren’t getting into official records.” Oddly enough, when the libs cite records, they never give that same caveat. So weird.

          • David Hewitt

            Your ‘libabsurd’ is a straw man. Those of us who feel black Americans have a point when they tell us they don’t trust the police, are simply underscoring a real problem. This is not a new problem and it really isn’t a valid argument to deny such a problem exists. In an ironic twist, that makes YOU the most visible aspect of the ‘problem’. As someone who grew up white, privileged, Christian, southern and segregated…. I’d say that IS the real problem: white people just like me, in absolute denial. Nobody is suggesting black men are being ‘wholesale slaughtered’ by the police. That is rhetoric that you came up with to describe the very same problem we ‘libabsurds’ are trying to have a rational dialogue about. When it’s ‘wholesale’, it will be too late because we’ll be immersed in a nightmare similar to Germany in the 1930s.

          • David Hewitt

            Every individual cop is not ‘out of control’. It is the *system* which is out of control. Do you deny this?

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            Is there room for improvement? Sure. Out of control? Yes, that I do deny.

        • David Hewitt

          Oh and thanks for the compliment! I almost neglected to mention that. :)

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            Whatever bulids your fragile confidence.

          • David Hewitt

            I almost missed this doozie! My confidence used to be fragile, indeed. I was picked on by bullies; people just like you who discovered very early in life that the human ‘lizard brain’ responds very well to intimidation (or ‘confidence’), but that most humans do not yet respond well to logic and reason (this is why Donald Trump is doing so well). But you’d better watch out because, some day, you might meet someone who’s both logical and reasonable…. AND cocky about it (someone who learned his lesson decades ago)! 😉

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            My comment made you feel pretty. Didn’t it?

          • David Hewitt

            You make me feel pretty and gay. I should probably quit you but I just cannot.

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            I will agree with you that there needs to be better oversight control. I just don’t think there is as big of a problem as “BLM” folks and libs seem to think there is. Hope you can quit me now :)

    • Martha Genn

      Most jobs these days, including every branch of the military requires random UA’s. If they can check them why not the police ( And they DO NOT require any form of suspicion about the person being tested it’s just a requirement of the job ) So don’t complain when that limb breaks.

      • Oh no, it’s Mitch

        And truthfully I’m not saying that they shouldn’t be tested. Who knows what might, or might not, be found?

        • baruchzed

          No, you were just taking the opportunity to spew venom. You are an idiot.

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            No, Jerkbait, that isn’t it. I just get sick of people hating on the police…all the time. Fact is, the same people who bitch about them are the same POS’s who will cry like little bitches because “Where were the cops?!?” Frankly, I suppose that it’s easy for me to defend them. I don’t break the law. I don’t look like I’m breaking the law. And I don’t act like a fucktard when I DO get pulled over. Oh, and yes, I don’t hold people in high regard who can work but choose to live off the money that people like me work 48+ hours a week for. But I’m sure, hippie, that you’ll have some other dumbass, liberal claptrap to spew.

          • Master Flash

            Oh no, it’s Mitch wrote: “POS’s who will cry like little bitches because “Where were the cops?!?””

            Oh no, it’s Mitch: That’s B.S. The only people spouting that are cop defenders. It’s common knowledge that cops don’t do anything but respond to crimes after they are committed. I’m not saying that’s a fault. It’s just that people don’t expect them to have psychic abilities enabling them to be there while the crime happens. So that argument is B.S. and only police and their apologists use it.

          • Oh no, it’s Mitch

            I don’t know how many times I’ve heard people who live in those war zone neighborhoods complain that if there was more of a police presence in said neighborhood that crime would go down. Well, there is a reason that the cops don’t have a presence in those neighborhoods: they are run and ruled by thugs. There is little crime in my area, and I don’t even live in a ritzy neighborhood. But, my area isn’t loaded down with roving bands of gangbangers. Personally, if I was police chief, in a city like Detroit or LA, my officers would never go into the Trumble St area or Compton. But those guys go into places most of you would go far out of your way to avoid. Are all Coos good and honest? Of course not. But are all of anyone in any proffesion?

          • smrnda

            I lived in those neighborhoods. The people there know the cops are less than useless. You call the cops they show up later *after* whatever danger is over. But they’re all over the place to ‘stop and frisk’ and write frivolous citations.

          • smrnda

            Well I complain about the police and I also quit bothering to call them years ago. Why? Because they’ll ignore a serious crime so they can bust some black kids for ‘drug possession’ since they’re looking for the easiest way.

            You can not break the law and have cops stop you with ‘stop and frisk’ and many police have openly admitted they carry drugs and weapons to plant on people. You say you ‘don’t look like you’re breaking the law’ – well, that’s harder for people who aren’t white. About any person I know who isn’t white has been hassled by cops. I know an Indian professor who had a cop pull a gun on him when he hadn’t done anything and the cop hadn’t bothered to even suggest what offense the Indian had committed.

            So, you work 48 hours a week? Maybe you should try working smarter instead of working harder. Some of us with education (enough to understand statistics) can do the European 30 hour workweek and pull in quite a lot of cash.

    • buzzookaman

      Mitch, look at the counties and states that have tried this. It failed because of the low percentage of welfare recipients who tested positive for banned drugs.

    • Jordan

      Totally different situation. Welfare recipients have a 99% less chance to kill me while being intoxicated. And, only 2% of welfare recipients are found to be on drugs – so obviously it is not a big issue. Please check facts before making stupid statement.

    • baruchzed

      WRONG…I want cops tested because I am sick of them being out of control, thinking they are above the law, and behaving like thugs.

    • smrnda

      Well, I can see no reason why someone who uses drugs is less entitled to welfare than someone who doesn’t – as a taxpayer I don’t care. I’m opposed to drugs being illegal anyway, being that the ‘war on drugs’ is just a pretense for establishing a police state.

      Another issue is that whenever ‘drug testing for welfare’ has been implemented, it’s caused a loss in money since the cost of drug testing is always higher than the small % of people who end up testing positive. Because no shit, poor people can’t afford drugs. It’s just a way for the drug testing companies to make money and for poor people to be degraded.

      The cops want to bust people for drugs. The cops and the politicians who back those policies had better be clean in that regard or else they’ve got no business citing anyone for drug charges. You don’t get on a high horse and bust someone for something you’re doing. Poor people don’t choose to be poor, but cops choose to be cops.

      • Oh no, it’s Mitch

        Regardless if what you are against, we have las, and until said laws are changed, that is the law. But why should some drugged out deadbeat who refuses to work have the same privledges as a dad who got laid off and is having trouble finding work?

  • Cliff Webb

    Steroids and amphetamines, like they learned in their time in the military…

    • Irma Forsman


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  • baruchzed

    If they refuse then fire them and let the corrupt union sue. Most cops are thugs who should be identified as such and removed from power.

    • WhitepolioceCIArapebabybOys

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  • Mike Askew

    The Department of Transportation test everyone in a safety sensitive positions after incidents/accidents, why couldn’t these people be drug/alcohol tested, they do hold folks lives in their hands, the ones they don’t kill.

    • Oh no, it’s Mitch

      How come I’ve never had a problem when I’ve dealt with the police? Oh yeah, I don’t act like a dickhole when dealing with them. Either that or I just somehow catch the ones who aren’t dirty. What are the odds?

      • Roll of the dice. You’ve always had a decent human being wearing a uniform assist you. Not all non-thug Mercans are so lucky.

  • Justin Lutz

    why the fuck are these cops entitled to have their rights upheld, they dont uphold anyone elses fucking rights, they have police dogs maul a guys fucking 17 month old infant daughter in the car while shes screaming horribly and forcibly stick their hands up a guys ass to look for drugs in the middle of the street in front of his neighbours, break into people homes for walking their dogs without a leash and have 6 police men physically assault them. these fucking cops have abused peoples human rights so much worse than anyone and then they are fucking crying about having to be tested for drugs being unconstitutional, get the fuck outta here!! thats fucking ridiculous. ya you know why you need to be tested for drugs? cause something is FUCKED UP here. SOMETHING IS FUCKED UP with this high of a number of police assaulting and killing and people for doing nothing, stealing their property and money, raping women, siccing dogs onto young teenage boys and then bragging about it to eachother on cell phones, shooting mentally ill kids to death. executing unarmed men by shooting them in the head while hes face down on the ground after they plant a gun near him and then scream hes got a gun!! Ya you gotta check if they are on drugs cause something really fucked up is going on for them to be doing such things to people all the time. and its not one or two of them, its a fucking lot of them.
    SOMETHING IS FUCKED UP and something needs to be done about it cause its way the fuck over the top almost as much as it could possibly be without an armed violent revolution occurring yet. They should drug test these fucking psychopaths, see how they fucking like having their constitutional rights violated on a regular fuckin basis.

  • Cruizin1960

    Since the City agreed to the contract, they would have to wait until it is time to renegotiate with the union to change the rules. But, the police do have a point in the random drug testing…it is a violation and would be a violation for anyone. The fact that they can force you, without cause, to provide a sample for testing and then use the results against you border on being unconstitutional…REGARDLESS OF THE JOB YOU ARE DOING. Testing before hiring and testing for the instances listed are fine…but random…nope.

  • WhitepolioceCIArapebabybOys

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  • Craig Jackson

    Test them all with the same False positive kits they used that have so many innocent people imprisoned !