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Marijuana, Drug Screenings, and Your Organization

All companies and organizations have a drug policy regarding current and prospective employees. (At least, they should have a drug policy.)

During the past several years, marijuana has made national headlines, namely in terms of the legality of its use. Not only have a number of states legalized the recreational use of marijuana, but over 20 states have legalized marijuana in some form or fashion.

The question becomes this one: what effect has all of this had on companies and their drug policies, including drug screenings?

One of the states that has legalized marijuana for recreational and medical use is Colorado. However, a ruling by the Colorado Supreme Court last year resulted in a proverbial “sigh of relief” from employers in that state.

The court ruled in a 6-0 decision that businesses can fire employees for the use of marijuana. These are the two important distinctions regarding that ruling:

  • Employers can fire employees for the use of medical marijuana, not just recreational marijuana.
  • Employers can fire employees for the use of marijuana even if it’s off-duty.

This ruling by the Colorado Supreme Court affirmed a lower court ruling. It also quite possibly helped to set the direction for other states.

After all, Colorado was a leader in the legalization of marijuana. That legalization created possible complications regarding how companies could approach marijuana in terms of their employees. In much the same way, the ruling by the Colorado Supreme Court could lead the way with this particular issue.

Taking all of this into consideration, there are two things that employers should do in regards to their drug policy:

  1. Make absolutely sure that their policy is worded in a completely fair and neutral fashion. In other words, it must be non-discriminatory.
  2. Have their legal counsel routinely review their policy to ensure compliance and protection in the face of ever-changing legislation at the state and national levels.

However, when employers use the services of a staffing firm, that firm takes care of all issues related to drug policies and drug testing. Time Staffing has an extensive pre-screening process for all employees. That process includes the following:

  • Background checking
  • Drug screening
  • Reference checking
  • Job-related skills testing

Make sure that your company’s drug policies and screening procedures are up-to-date, and click here for more information about Time Staffing’s services for employers.

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