• LinkedIn
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google+

Medical pot laws don’t prohibit drug testing

by on
in HR Management,Human Resources

You are free to tell employees they can be terminated for having marijuana in their systems and then randomly test for the substance. That’s true even if a doctor recommends that the employee use medical marijuana.

Just make sure your policies state clearly that medical marijuana use isn’t allowed and that it doesn’t matter whether a doctor has recommended its use.

Recent case: Joann worked as a correctional officer at Pelican Bay State Prison.

When hired, she received a copy of a drug testing policy that warned her about random drug tests and specified that testing positive for marijuana was grounds for termination. Later, after medical marijuana use was approved in California, the department issued a new memo that clarified a prescription was needed for any controlled substance use and that because medical marijuana wasn’t “prescribed,” but was “recommended,” it didn’t qualify.

Still, Joann got her recommendation and began using marijuana to treat insomnia. When she tested positive during a random drug test, she was terminated.

She sued, noting that her marijuana use was legal in California under state law. She argued she should not have been fired for engaging in a legal activity.

The court rejected her argument and said the employer could set its own rules, including only excusing prescribed controlled substances. The case was dismissed. (Morrison v. State Personnel Board, et al., No. C069749, Court of Appeal of California, 3rd Appellate District, 2013)

Final note: Remember, you get to set the rules. Just because something is legal doesn’t mean you have to accept its use at work.

No court would expect you to allow an employee to show up intoxicated after drinking alcohol, a perfectly legal activity. The same goes for marijuana.

Like what you've read? ...Republish it and share great business tips!

Attention: Readers, Publishers, Editors, Bloggers, Media, Webmasters and more...

We believe great content should be read and passed around. After all, knowledge IS power. And good business can become great with the right information at their fingertips. If you'd like to share any of the insightful articles on BusinessManagementDaily.com, you may republish or syndicate it without charge.

The only thing we ask is that you keep the article exactly as it was written and formatted. You also need to include an attribution statement and link to the article.

" This information is proudly provided by Business Management Daily.com: http://www.businessmanagementdaily.com/36165/medical-pot-laws-dont-prohibit-drug-testing "

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

GP July 30, 2013 at 11:56 am

Any drug-testing program affiliated with the government that threatens the employer if he warns any employee that a drug test is approaching is censoring speech as a government agent, a no-no according to the First Amendment.

Reply

Leave a Comment