Medical Marijuana Law Will Impact Hiring Practices
June 4, 2012
The Connecticut Legislature passed, and Governor Malloy signed, a bill authorizing the use of medical marijuana. The bill takes effect October 1, 2012.
The Legislation will require employers to change the way they consider pre-employment drug testing results, as well as the general issue of marijuana use. While the law specifically prohibits employees from using or being under the influence of marijuana in the work place, it specifically prohibits failing to hire, discharging, penalizing or threatening an employee solely on the basis of marijuana use, if the person or employee qualifies as a "qualifying patient." A person becomes a "qualifying patient" if he/she is over 18, a Connecticut resident and "has been diagnosed by a physician as having a debilitating medical condition." The law also creates an exception to permissible marijuana use if required under federal law or to obtain federal funding. Federal law still makes medical marijuana use illegal.
A qualifying patient may receive a certification from a physician authorizing the use of marijuana for palliative reasons. The law contains an exception if marijuana use endangers the health or well being of the user or his/her caregiver.
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