Fifteen states and the District of Columbia currently have laws permitting certain individuals legally to possess and use marijuana for medical reasons. Most states permit individuals to buy only small quantities of marijuana at designated treatment facilities. While the statutes exempt medical marijuana users from state criminal prosecution, marijuana use for any reason, including a medical reason, remains illegal under federal law.
Unfortunately, most of the state statutes do not address whether an employer must accommodate an employee’s use of medical marijuana, leaving employers guessing as to how to handle these situations. For example, must employers give employees breaks and facilities so that they can smoke marijuana for medicinal purposes during the work day? What about those employees who do not smoke marijuana on site but test positive in random drug screenings because of their medical marijuana use outside of work hours? Can an employee reject a job applicant who tests positive for marijuana but claims to be a registered medical marijuana user?
This program will discuss an employer’s rights and obligations to accommodate an employee’s use of medical marijuana. We will examine state statutes permitting medical use of marijuana and recent case law interpreting these statutes in the context of the employment relationship. We will discuss the interaction between medical marijuana statutes and other employment laws, such as the Americans With Disabilities Act, OSHA and state family and medical laws. We will analyze employers’ options as they navigate this new world, from a zero tolerance policy to carving out exceptions for the medical use of marijuana. We will also discuss best practices in drafting and enforcing an effective drug-free workplace policy.
Who Should Participate
This program will benefit senior human resources professionals who are responsible for drafting policies and procedures, as well as compliance professionals.
What You Will Learn
Attendees will learn recent statutes and case law addressing medical marijuana use, employers’ rights and obligations with respect to employees and applicants’ medical use of marijuana and best practices in drafting drug use policies.
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