Recreational Marijuana in Massachusetts – What does it mean for workplace drug testing?

Residents in Massachusetts voted on Tuesday to pass a ballot initiative legalizing recreational marijuana. As of December 15, it will now be legal for residents to possess small amounts of the drug, and grow it in their homes.

Just like in other states who’ve passed similar measures, this change will have companies scratching their heads to understand what it means for workplace drug testing. Some key points to consider are:

• At the federal level, marijuana is still illegal. It’s a Class 1 drug, which is defined by the DEA as having no medical value and is highly addictive. Other Class 1 drugs include heroin and LSD.

• Nothing in this new law restricts employers from including marijuana in their drug testing program. This was the case when medical marijuana passed, and it’s still the case now.

• You should review your company’s drug policy and consider adding language that clearly states that the possession or use of recreational or medical marijuana is prohibited and potentially a cause for adverse employment action.

ARCpoint Labs of Woburn specializes in helping companies implement workplace drug testing programs. Call us today for more information.

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