Proposal to Expand Workplace Protections for Marijuana Shoppers Signed by Washington DC Mayor

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An order clarifying legal protections for particular District workers who consume marijuana though away from the job was officially signed into law Tuesday by DC Mayor Muriel Bowser.

According to NORML, the new guidelines apply to all District government agencies below the direct administrative authority of the Mayor.

Below the guidelines, several would-be workers will no longer face pre-employment drug screenings. It states that “Employees who are not in a security-sensitive position will be tested for drugs only upon affordable suspicion, or right after an accident or incident. Hence, these workers not in security-sensitive positions may perhaps uncover that they can use cannabis, with or devoid of a health-related card authorizing [it], so extended as they are not impaired at operate.”

Commenting on the policy adjust, NORML NE Political Associate Tyler McFadden stated: “Employment protections are essential to make certain that law-abiding adults are not unduly discriminated against in their efforts to be productive members of society solely mainly because of their use of cannabis though off the job. This order delivers clarity and guidance to employers and peace of thoughts to the workers who operate in the District of Columbia.”

For workers searching for security-sensitive positions, the order states that these who test constructive for the presence of cannabis on a pre-employment drug screen may perhaps be “disqualified.” In some circumstances, having said that, the order states that these who initially test constructive for cannabis may perhaps obtain a “second chance to take a drug test at least two weeks right after the initial test benefits have been offered.”

“In circumstances involving post-accident testing, a constructive drug test outcome for cannabis metabolites will continue to be viewed as presumptive proof of impairment.” Having said that, this “presumption may perhaps be overcome if the employee presents clear or convincing proof that he or she was not impaired at the time of the test.”

Mainly because THC’s principal metabolite, carboxy-THC is lipid-soluble, residual levels of the compound may perhaps persist in urine for weeks or even months post-abstinence. According to the US Division of Justice, a constructive urine test screen for drug metabolites “does not indicate abuse or addiction, recency, frequency, or quantity of use or impairment.”

Earlier this month, members of the DC City Council authorized Act Quantity A23-0114: The Health-related Marijuana Plan Patient Employment Protection Short-term Amendment Act, which seeks to impose explicit protections for health-related cannabis individuals against workplace discrimination.

It states: “A public employer may perhaps not refuse to employ, terminate from employment, penalize, fail to market, or otherwise take adverse employment action against an person primarily based upon the individual’s status as a qualifying [medical cannabis] patient. … A qualifying patient’s failure to pass a public employer-administered drug test for marijuana elements or metabolites may perhaps not be applied as a basis for employment-associated choices unless affordable suspicion exists that the certified individuals was impaired by marijuana at the qualifying patient’s spot of employment or in the course of hours of employment.” Like all District legislation, the act should undergo a 30-day Congressional overview prior to taking impact.

Added legislation strengthening employment protections for qualifying individuals remains pending prior to the DC Council.

Marijuana has been legal in DC given that voters authorized the Legalization of Possession of Minimal Amounts of Marijuana for Individual Use Act of 2014. The proposal, which was passed with almost 65% assistance, legalized the possession of up to two ounces of marijuana, as nicely as the private cultivation of up to six plants (3 of which can be mature). The initiative didn’t establish a legal implies of getting the plant.

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