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Media Firm to Send Drug-Sniffing Dogs into Its Newsrooms

January 11, 1986|From the Washington Post

WASHINGTON — Capital Cities/ABC Inc., the giant New York-based media company formed when Capital Cities Communications bought the American Broadcasting Co., has announced a tough new anti-drug policy that includes sending drug-sniffing dogs into newspaper and television offices and eventually may lead to mandatory urine tests for all new workers.

The Kansas City Times and Star will be the first Capitol Cities-owned company to be subjected to the canine search, according to Publisher James H. Hale, and angry reporters have already reacted by bringing in dog biscuits and barking loudly in the newsroom.

Capital Cities/ABC executives in New York said the dog patrols may also be brought in to search ABC television offices. Capital Cities bought ABC last March in an unprecedented $3.5-billion sale.

ABC's new president, John B. Sias, formerly president of the Capital Cities Publishing Division, said the use of dogs, and the possible use of undercover investigations, is only meant to enforce a longstanding policy against drugs.

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