College athletes around the country may soon be in for an unexpected change in drug testing requirements. The NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports (CSMAS) recently showed support for removing cannabis from the organization’s banned drug list and testing protocols. The committee will discuss the decision with its members throughout the summer and final action will be decided on in the fall. Action items the committee will focus on include considering whether NCAA drug testing should only be limited to performance-enhancing substances, and seeking approval from the NCAA Board of Governors to stop testing for cannabis at championship events while the ultimate legislative decision is pending. To finalize the decision of cannabis being removed from the NCAA’s list of banned drugs, all three of its divisional governance bodies have to introduce and adopt legislation.Continue Reading Puff-Puff-Pass the Ball? NCAA Ponders a Different Kind of High Standard for Drug Testing Athletes
Since 2014, Minnesota has provided applicants and employees with protections if they lawfully use cannabis for medicinal purposes. Starting August 1, 2023, Minnesota will provide protections to individuals who use cannabis for recreational purposes, after Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed a state law allowing adults 21 and older to use recreational cannabis. The new law amends the state’s Consumable Products Act to protect off-duty cannabis use. The law also amends Minnesota’s Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace Act (DATWA) by excluding cannabis from the definition of “drug” and by creating two different workplace drug testing schemes based on whether positions are exempt from the cannabis testing prohibitions. Continue Reading Minnesota’s New Recreational Cannabis Law Results in First-Of-Its-Kind Drug Testing Scheme
On September 18, 2022, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed AB 2188, which will make it unlawful for California employers to rely on cannabis test results for employment purposes, unless in very narrow circumstances.
By including the law as an amendment to the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), the new law, which is effective January 1, 2024, essentially makes cannabis users a protected class in California.Continue Reading California Employers See Most Cannabis Testing Go Up in Smoke
As previously reported here, on February 22, 2021, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed the “New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act” (CREAMMA), which amended the New Jersey Constitution to legalize recreational cannabis.
The law allows employers to conduct numerous forms of drug testing for cannabis, but limits an employer’s ability to rely on a positive cannabis test result in making employment decisions. It requires that a drug test include both “scientifically reliable objective testing methods and procedures, such as testing of blood, urine, or saliva” and a “physical evaluation.” The “physical evaluation” must be conducted by an individual certified to provide an opinion about an employee’s state of impairment, or lack of impairment, related to the use of cannabis. The law tasked the Cannabis Regulatory Commission with adopting standards for this “Workplace Impairment Recognition Expert” (WIRE), who must be trained to detect and identify an employee’s use or impairment from cannabis or other intoxicating substances and to assist in the investigation of workplace accidents.Continue Reading New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission Issues Guidance on “Workplace Impairment” Determinations
The latest Gallup poll shows that 68% of Americans support cannabis legalization. Further, the rate of positive cannabis test results has jumped in the last decade. And according to recent news reports, some large employers have stopped testing job applicants for cannabis. As a result, other employers may be pondering whether to change their approach to an increasingly popular drug…
Continue Reading To Test or Not to Test: Considerations for Employers Pondering the Future of Their Cannabis Testing Practices
Effective January 1, 2022, most Philadelphia employers will be prohibited from requiring prospective employees to undergo testing for the presence of marijuana as a condition of employment. Currently, only New York City and Nevada have similar drug testing restrictions, but we expect this trend to continue. Nevada prohibits employers from taking adverse action against applicants who test positive for marijuana,…
Continue Reading Philadelphia’s Restrictions on Pre-Employment Marijuana Tests Become Effective January 1, 2022
Seyfarth Synopsis: In the first six months of 2021, several states legalized marijuana for recreational and medicinal purposes, including New York, New Jersey, Virginia, and New Mexico. States show no signs of slowing down. On June 22, 2021, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont signed a bill that legalized recreational marijuana use by adults 21 years and older. Although provisions relating to possession are effective now (as of July 1, 2021), the employment-related provisions are not effective until July 1, 2022. Because the new law will prohibit many employers from taking certain actions in the absence of clear policies addressing marijuana use or evidence of impairment, Connecticut employers that do not have written drug and alcohol testing policies should consider developing them in the near future and those companies that have policies in place should review and, if necessary, revise their current drug and alcohol testing policies. In addition, all employers should consider training their managers on making reasonable suspicion determinations.
Can employers still maintain a drug and alcohol-free workplace?
Yes. Employers do not have to tolerate employees being under the influence of marijuana while they are working and they may prohibit employees from using and possessing marijuana during work hours and while performing their job duties or on company premises. However, employers still must be mindful of the state law protections currently available to medical marijuana users including, among other things, not taking adverse action or otherwise discriminating against someone based solely on their status as a qualifying medical marijuana patient or their possession of medical marijuana.Continue Reading Connecticut Becomes the 20th Jurisdiction to Legalize Recreational Marijuana
Seyfarth Synopsis: On June 25, 2021, concluding that Iowa’s comprehensive drug testing statute requires employers to “substantially” comply with its mandates, the Iowa Supreme Court issued two separate decisions finding that employers violated the statute after terminating employees in response to failed drug tests. The decisions serve as important reminders to employers to ensure their drug testing policies and practices …
Continue Reading Iowa Supreme Court Takes on Employer Drug Testing Practices
Seyfarth Synopsis: An American athlete has been suspended for one month for testing positive for marijuana and violating the Anti-Doping Rule, putting her ability to represent the United States in the Olympic games in jeopardy.
American athlete, Sha’Carri Richardson, set herself apart on June 19, 2021, by winning the 100-meter race in 10.86 seconds at the U.S. Olympic trials. Richardson…
Continue Reading Sha’Carri Richardson, Olympic Hopeful, Suspended after Testing Positive for Cannabis
Recently, when dismissing a job-applicant’s disability discrimination claims brought under California state law, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California issued two welcome reminders to employers. First, an employer can condition an offer of employment on the completion of a preemployment drug screen, including a test for marijuana. This is true even though California has legalized marijuana…
Continue Reading California District Court Dismisses Disability Claims Based on Failed Preemployment Marijuana Screen