The Takeaway: It’s important for human resources professionals to note this bill says that state employees cannot be fired for being medical marijuana patients, nor can recruiters choose not to hire someone because of their status as a medical marijuana user. Private sector employees do not have these same protections. However, even if you operate in the private sector, it's always a good idea to protect your organization with a drug use policy.
The Takeaway: It’s interesting to note that Missouri doctors, who will be in charge of prescribing medical marijuana, were largely against medical marijuana, so things might not change drastically for Missouri patients. Similar to companies in Utah, Missouri companies should still follow best practices and cover their bases with a drug use policy.
The Takeaway: Walter Stella, an attorney in San Francisco, told the California SHRM conference that employers should treat recreational marijuana like they treat alcohol. This means that it’s obviously not okay for employees to smoke at the workplace, but employers should allow employees to do what they would like outside of the workplace.
That said, employers are allowed to refer to federal drug laws for their drug policies, meaning that drug-free workplaces and drug screenings are still allowed in states where recreational marijuana is legalized. In Michigan specifically, employers will have the right to terminate or refuse to hire an employee if they test positive for marijuana, or have marijuana at the workplace.
What does this new marijuana legislation mean for HR?
As a smart employer, you already know compliance is important. Failing to comply with changing regulations can result in costly (and preventable) class action lawsuits. The best way for HR professionals to sift through these new laws is to work with a reputable background and drug screening company that is dedicated to keeping up with the latest in compliance news. At Verified First, our in-house compliance team does just that!
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