New California Bill Would Prohibit Employers From Acting Against Workers for Off-Work Cannabis Use

A invoice launched within the California Meeting in February 2022 would prohibit employers from discriminating towards staff and job candidates for off-duty marijuana use.

Assembly Bill (AB) 2188 would amend the Honest Employment and Housing Act to make it illegal for employers to discriminate towards job candidates or staff for the “use of cannabis off the job and away from the workplace.” It additionally would stop discrimination towards candidates or staff that fail drug exams detecting “nonpsychoactive cannabis metabolites in their urine, hair, or bodily fluids.” However, it might not allow staff “to be impaired by, or to use cannabis on the job.” AB 2188 additionally consists of carveouts for constructing and development trades staff, federal contractors, federal funding recipients, or federal licensees required to take care of drug-free workplaces.

AB 2188 would add to the present physique of legal guidelines legalizing and regulating marijuana use within the Golden State. Certainly, Proposition 215 legalized the medical use of hashish in 1996, whereas in 2016, Proposition 64 did so for leisure marijuana.

Whereas the enactment of Prop. 64 represents a victory for leisure marijuana advocates, the laws doesn’t embrace language prohibiting employers from discriminating towards staff for off-work leisure marijuana use. On the contrary, it expressly offers that employers is not going to be required to accommodate an worker’s use of marijuana. The legislative initiative said that its function and intent had been, amongst different issues, to “[a]llow public and private employers to enact and enforce workplace policies pertaining to marijuana.”

Present hashish laws are in line with the California Supreme Courtroom’s holding in Ross v. Ragingwire Telecommunications, Inc. In that case the courtroom examined the battle between California’s Compassionate Use Act (which supplies an individual who makes use of marijuana for medical functions on a doctor’s advice a protection to sure state felony prices and permission to own the drug) and federal regulation (which prohibits the drug’s possession, even by medical customers). The courtroom held that the Compassionate Use Act didn’t intend to deal with the rights and obligation of employers and staff, and additional famous that the possession and use of marijuana couldn’t be a protected exercise as a result of it’s nonetheless unlawful underneath federal regulation.

AB 2188 is and displays an extra effort by some to legalize and regulate the non-medical use of marijuana. As of 2021, 18 states and a variety of territories had enacted legal guidelines to control hashish for grownup non-medical use. Whereas within the employment context, sure states have moved to grant staff some degree of safety for medical use, others prolonged safety for non-medical use. Employers are prohibited from taking opposed motion towards staff or candidates’ leisure use in Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, and shortly, Connecticut.

AB 2188 handed the Meeting Could 26 and was learn within the Senate for the primary time Could 27. If it makes it to the governor’s desk, he can have till Sept. 30, 2022, to signal or veto it.

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