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PSH-13-0036 - In the Matter of Personnel Security Hearing

On June 27, 2013, an OHA Hearing Officer issued a decision in which he concluded that an individual’s authorization access should be restored.  A Local Security Office suspended the individual’s security clearance after he tested positive for amphetamines on a random drug screening at the facility where he is employed by a DOE contractor. The individual suffers from diabetes and obesity and was concerned about weight gain over the upcoming holidays.  During a conversation with his sister-in-law about her successful weight loss, she offered him a few appetite suppressants that she had received from her doctor.  The appetite suppressant was a drug containing phentermine that had been prescribed for her by her doctor. The individual took one pill the following evening, several hours before reporting to work, and was selected for a random drug screening at the end of his shift. The individual had taken a single “diet pill.” He and his wife subsequently destroyed the remaining pills he had been given.  The individual had not made a conscious connection between the appetite suppression he had been given and the prohibition on the use of drugs prescribed for others. The individual had been subject to random drug screening for 28 years immediately preceding this event and had tested negative on each of them. The individual use was a one-time use which is unlikely to recur and does not constitute the individual being a “user of a controlled substance” under the Bond Amendment.

Wade Boswell - Hearing Officer