Medical marijuana and drug screening

A topic of hot debate these days is medical marijuana and the workplace. Most companies have a zero-tolerance drug policy, and this includes those who hold medical marijuana cards. As MYB has discussed before in this blog, drugs have no place in a work environment, which is why such zero-tolerance policies are so widespread. It’s not an issue of being prejudiced against those who may use a medical marijuana, the issue is the length of time the drug stays in the system. Those who partake in the evening will still have cannabis in their system the next morning when they arrive at work, and that is the problem both employers and employees are having to face. Users claim drug screening is discriminatory against those who genuinely suffer and use marijuana to ease their pain, whereas the employer has a primary concern of ensuring the safety of their workers – something that cannot be assured if their are individuals at the workplace with drugs in their system. This is all complicated further with the discrepancies between laws at state and federal level. Because medical marijuana is not recognized by the US federal government, this is a state-by-state issue. Things will stay this way unless and until a lawsuit is filed and decided in federal court. At the end of the day, an employers decisions on those with MMJ cards will vary depending on the working environment – a fork lift driver with marijuana in their system will be more dangerous to others than a secretary, for example. In the event of dealing with MMJ cardholders in the workplace, no matter what decision is made, it is always a good idea to document well, and ensure the best interests of your employer are at the forefront.]]>

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