Companies in states where marijuana is legal for any purpose must now tackle the question of policy regarding employee usage of the drug during off hours. Like alcohol, no one expects it to be okay to smoke marijuana during the workday, but with many companies instituting randomized drug tests and a zero-tolerance policy for substance abuse, there’s a grey area when it comes to after-hours use among employees who have a prescription for the drug or when the company is located in a state where it is legal to use the substance recreationally.
It’s not a question that will be answered overnight. Curtis Graves is an attorney who advises companies on workplace issues. He told USA Today: “I imagine there will be a great deal of upheaval in the future. The law is going to be in flux for another 10 years.”
The Right to a Drug-Free Workplace
Even in the 20 states where marijuana is legalized for medicinal purposes, companies are not required to make provisions for employees who smoke on their own time. Companies have the right to maintain a drug-free workplace, and groups that have protested this stance have been shut down.
Even in Colorado, where the drug is legalized for recreational use and employers are not allowed to fire employees for legal activities, employers may still fire workers for after-hour marijuana usage. State courts have found that marijuana is still not technically legal because it remains illegal for any use federally, so an employer’s right to maintain a drug-free workplace remains in tact.
When Addiction Creeps In
Unfortunately, it’s not just a job that can be lost when someone is unable to manage marijuana use. Addicts risk losing everything when marijuana dependence becomes an issue: physical health, mental health, family, goals, and quality of life are all at risk.
What can you do to help a family member who seems unable to recognize the implications of their marijuana use? You can:
- Discuss the issue openly. There are no secrets when it comes to addiction even if your loved one believes that he is hiding it well.
- Offer support. Make it clear that you love your addicted family member. Addiction is a medical disorder and can be treated. It is not their fault that they developed a drug dependence.
- Offer treatment. Rehabilitation is possible. And you can be the one to connect your loved one to a program that will help.
Here at Axis, we offer a comprehensive, evidence-based treatment plan for those who struggle with addiction to any substance. Call now and get the information you need to help your loved one get started on their journey to recovery today.