Fourteen employees of the Caloocan city government have been dismissed for testing positive in random drug tests on all its departments, which ensures city hall remains “drug free,” Mayor Oscar Malapitan said Tuesday.
In an emergency meeting of the Caloocan Anti-Drug Abuse Council, Malapitan said the dismissal “goes to show that our anti-drugs campaign starts at ‘home,’ and this should be followed by the various business enterprises and barangays in the city.”
Lawyer Sikini Labastilla, Caloocan’s Human Resources Management department OIC-chief, said the dismissed employees represent just 0.3 percent of the city’s 4,500 employees.
The urine samples of four regular employees and 10 “job order” staff tested positive for illegal drugs, Labastilla said. Succeeding confirmatory blood tests yielded positive results.
The mayor instructed Labastilla to automatically dismiss the 10 job order staff, with the option of rehiring them after they undergo full drug rehabilitation.
The four regular employees went on compulsory leave, and the city government will assist them in their immediate treatment and rehabilitation, Malapitan said.
The mayor is encouraging Caloocan’s business establishments to conduct their own drug testing for all their officers and employees. The mayor, through CADAC, would then issue them a certificate or business plate with the stamp of a “drug-free establishment/business.”
Other local government units in Metro Manila have yielded two to four percent illegal drug “infections” among their workforce, Labastilla said.
Caloocan City has the distinction as the only LGU with an ongoing multi-sectoral, out-patient drug rehabilitation program. A drug rehab facility in North Caloocan is now under construction, financed and to be operated solely by the city government, the mayor said.