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Medical marijuana: ADA protection up in smoke

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in Employment Law,Human Resources

A recent court ruling in California confirms that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) does not protect the right of disabled employees to use medical marijuana, even if it’s prescribed by a doctor. Several other courts have refused to prohibit discrimination against workers based on their use of medical marijuana.

Reason: The ADA specifically noted that a person with a legally protected “disability” does not include someone who is currently using illegal drugs. As the court said, “Congress has made clear that the ADA defines ‘illegal drug use’ by reference to federal, rather than state, law, and federal law does not authorize the plaintiffs’ medical marijuana use.” (James v. City of Costa Mesa)

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