What Do New Marijuana Laws Mean for Employee Drug Testing? - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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What Do New Marijuana Laws Mean for Employee Drug Testing?


| In the wake of recent medical marijuana legislation, many citizens are confused about their rights in the workplace. Due to federal law, an employee may chance being fired for a positive drug test, even if they have a medical marijuana prescription. This presentation offers tips for understanding the new laws, and how to keep your rights protected. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: What Do New Marijuana Laws Mean for Employee Drug Testing?

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  • Over the past decade, the United States has
    significantly relaxed its stance on marijuana. As
    of this year, four states (CO, OR, WA, AK) and
    Washington DC have now legalized recreational
    use, while twenty-three others allow their
    residents access to medical marijuana. With rules
    varying widely by state, many Americans have
    found themselves questioning how the new laws
    will affect their rights.

  • Many new marijuana laws are vague and open to
    interpretation, so its no wonder citizens have
    concerns. Residents of legalized states, in
    particular, question how legal marijuana will
    affect day-to-day life. One of the most
    contentious issues is determining how the new
    laws will affect workplace drug testing and
    rights to privacy.

  • Though many states are becoming more lax about
    recreational marijuana, its still classified as
    an illicit substance by the federal government.
    This fact alone is why workplace drug tests may
    still be allowed in many circumstances. Similar
    to alcohol, employers are concerned about
    regulating the use of or repercussions of
    marijuana in the workplace.

  • The short answer is yes, even if you live in a
    state with legal marijuana. Since the federal
    government still considers marijuana illegal,
    some companies may have the grounds to continue
    drug testing. This is especially common for
    companies that have regional offices and
    employees who travel state-to-state.

  • This largely depends on the state, and how
    marijuana is being used by an employee. Some
    states have written information about workplace
    drug testing into their legislation. For example,
    the state of Pennsylvania is considering a
    medical marijuana bill that would prohibit
    employers from firing a prescribing employee that
    uses outside of work hours. While some states
    also provide mandatory rehab instead of
    termination, others favor the federal
    governments zero tolerance policy.

  • Some employers question whether drug testing is
    productive in the face of the new laws. It brings
    up privacy issues for many, especially since most
    drug tests measure recent usage instead of
    current impairment. Businesses also worry about
    the long-term effect that drug testing might have
    on the workforce as a whole. Terminating an
    employee due to weekend marijuana usage may
    disintegrate trust between employers and
    employees, leading to a deficiency of quality
    workers in a given industry.

  • If you live in a state with legal marijuana and
    worry about how it affects your rights in the
    workplace, make sure you do your research. Start
    internally by brushing up on your companys drug
    testing policy and notating any concerns. With
    laws changing as recently as this year, your
    company policy may very well be outdated. If this
    is the case, work with HR to develop a new policy
    that satisfies all parties involved.

  • If you have doubts about your companys drug test
    policy, speak to HR. You may also want to
    consider talking to an attorney who specializes
    in medical marijuana legislation. He or she can
    help translate the intricacies of your states
    marijuana laws and make sure you and your
    colleagues are protected.

  • Clear Test is dedicated to helping clients
    protect both their jobs and the right to privacy.
    We provide products to help pass drug tests, from
    synthetic urine to detox drinks. For more info,
    visit our website at ClearTest.com or call
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