Maine is now the country’s first state to institutionally protect employees from unfair hiring and firing practices due to cannabis use.
Employers will no longer be able to test applicants for cannabis prior to hiring, or fire an employee for using cannabis outside of the workplace. Lexology notes that the Maine Department of Labor has removed cannabis from its list of drugs for which “model” employers should test.
Despite the fact that the state has yet to finalize rules that will permit the retail sale of marijuana and marijuana products, employers with lawful workplace drug-testing policies implemented in accordance with Maine law will need to assess compliance approaches, risks and risk tolerance in connection with marijuana policy prohibitions, continued marijuana testing and adverse action, if any, based on verified confirmed positive marijuana test results.
Businesses can still terminate employees that show up to work high or use cannabis on the job, and employees will continue to be subject to drug tests for federally-funded positions.
If you’re a Maine employer and concerned about how this might affect you, get in touch with our experts today.
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