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To take further steps in preserving and improving the health of all its employees, First Financial has recently implemented a nonsmoking hiring policy requiring all job applicants to take a nicotine test during their post-offer drug screening. This screening will detect the presence of nicotine in all forms of tobacco, e-cigarettes included. Individuals who test positive will no longer be considered for employment and their conditional job offer will be withdrawn. This policy applies to potential employees and rehires for First Financial Bank, N.A., First Financial Trust & Asset Management, First Technology Services, First Financial Bankshares, Inc., and other bank affiliates. This policy does not apply to current employees of First Financial Bank and its affiliates. Current employees who are enrolled in our health insurance and who have used nicotine products within the last twelve months have a semi-monthly surcharge applied to their health care premiums. A healthier workforce allows us to better serve our customers as well as set an example for our communities.
Frequently Asked Questions About Cessation and Nicotine-Free Hiring Policy
First Financial Bank began screening all candidates for nicotine who have been extended a conditional offer of employment that would begin working after January 1, 2021.
Yes. This policy applies to potential employees and rehires for First Financial Bank, N.A., First Financial Trust & Asset Management, First Technology Services, First Financial Bankshares, Inc., and other bank affiliates.
A nicotine user is any individual who uses nicotine products including, but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, pipes and chewing tobacco. This policy also applies to e-cigarettes, which are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration as a nicotine product. Individuals who use nicotine patches and/or nicotine gum are considered tobacco users.
A nicotine product is any type of product that contains or is made or derived from nicotine and intended for human consumption. Products that are chewed, smoked, absorbed, dissolved, inhaled, snorted, sniffed or ingested by any other means are included, as are components, parts or accessories of nicotine products.
The testing is part of the urine pre-employment drug screen done during the onboarding process. Nicotine test results are on a pass/fail basis.
Yes, it will be stated clearly prior to and during the application process.
The new policy does not apply to current employees of First Financial Bank and its affiliates. Our organization is focusing on developing a workforce that models a healthier lifestyle for our community. A healthier workforce means we can better serve our customers as well as set an example for our communities.
We want to encourage healthy habits, so for the past several years we have supported current employees who want to quit by providing free tobacco cessation programs and resources. A healthy lifestyle is the key to one’s continued well-being, and we know changing one’s lifestyle for the better takes time and real effort. Employees who are enrolled in our health insurance and who use nicotine products have a semi-monthly surcharge applied to their health care premiums.
United Healthcare offers a free, tobacco cessation program called Quit for Life. With a 95% satisfaction rate, Quit for Life provides:
Tools and support to help members quit cigarettes, e-cigarettes, vaping and tobacco.
Online tools and support that may help you quit at your own pace and live smoke-free.
A personal, 1-on-1 Quit Coach® who will help you create a customized Action Plan.
Text2Quit® text messages for daily tips, encouragement and reminders.
Quit smoking medication to help control and overcome tobacco cravings, such as nicotine gum or patches — for no charge, based on eligibility.
We will have information for interested applicants on our Careers page informing them of our nicotine-free hiring policy. Anyone who receives and accepts a conditional offer of employment for a position at First Financial Bank, or one of our affiliates, will be tested for nicotine as part of our regular pre-employment testing. Any candidate and potential rehire who tests positive for nicotine will no longer be considered for employment and their conditional job offer will be withdrawn.
Yes. Under federal law, smoking is considered an activity, rather than a medical condition, so it is not protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
This policy applies to any applicant regardless of how often they use nicotine products.
The length of time nicotine stays in someone’s system varies. Some of the variables include length of time a person has been smoking, number of cigarettes smoked, type of cigarette, depth and duration of inhalation, the difference in the way each person’s body breaks down the nicotine, etc. Nicotine can stay in the system up to 30 days or more. It can even take weeks longer until the nicotine is depleted from the fat in the body.
Smoking one cigarette can produce a positive result, depending on when the urine sample is taken.
When testing for nicotine, the lab has built in levels that would take into account the possibility of second hand smoke. Therefore, a positive result will mean the individual who tested positive is a nicotine user.
Applicants must be nicotine-free to be considered for hire.