January 27, 2020 · HR Compliance, Human Resource Management,
Starting in 2020, some states will prohibit employers from screening new hires for marijuana, CBD, or any other form of drugs or refuse to hire applicants based on failed pre-employment drug screens. Only 4 out of 50 states have no public cannabis program i.e they are fully illegal and these states are Idaho, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas.
The use of recreational marijuana is legal in the following 12 states which imply Marijuana is legal for adults and is taxed and regulated similarly to alcohol. These twelve states are Washington Oregon, California, Nevada, Colorado, Alaska, Illinois, Michigan, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Maine. Out of these states, only California, Michigan, Oregon, Illinois, and Colorado can fire the employees who test positive for marijuana even off-hours or for medicinal use.
States that allow CBD or Low THC products are Wyoming, Texas, Iowa, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi.
Image Source: NCSL
Nevada Marijuana law passed on Jan 1, 2020, states that a public or private employer is not prohibited from maintaining, enacting, and enforcing a workplace policy prohibiting or restricting actions or conduct otherwise permitted under the Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act.
23 out of 50 states have comprehensive medical marijuana programs.
But regardless of its use as medicinal or for recreational, if an employee cannot perform his job duties and responsibilities, then that employer can take action regardless of the residing state. Employers can also have a zero-marijuana policy for the jobs that directly impact the safety of others like drivers, nurses, child care-givers, etc.
But this does not give the employer a free hand to create a zero-tolerance policy to handle the use of marijuana in the workplace.
|State||Legal Status||Medicinal||Not a Criminal offence|
|Alaska||Fully Legal since 2014||Yes||Yes|
|California||Fully Legal since 2016||Yes||Yes|
|District of Columbia||Fully Legal||Yes||Yes|
|Maine||Fully Legal since 2016||Yes||Yes|
|Massachusetts||Fully Legal since 2016||Yes||Yes|
|Nevada||Fully Legal since 2016||Yes||Yes|
|North Carolina||Fully Illegal||No||Reduced|
|Oregon||Fully Legal since 2014||Yes||Yes|
|South Carolina||Fully Illegal||No||No|
|South Dakota||Fully Illegal||No||No, since 1977|
|Washington||Fully Legal since 2012||Yes||Yes|
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