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Marijuana’s Legalization Doesn’t Mean It’s Not a Drug

The legalization of marijuana in about 22 states of the United States has opened up new avenues for its medical and recreational usage. While this may be a cause for celebration for many, it has also raised concerns among employers who are wondering how they should handle the issue of marijuana use in the workplace.

With the changing laws and attitudes toward marijuana, employers must carefully consider their policies regarding drug testing and marijuana screening. As the use of THC becomes more widespread, employers need to understand its impact on their workplace and take steps to protect their employees' health, safety, and productivity.

In this article, we will examine the impact of marijuana on employees while guiding employers on how to handle this complex and evolving issue.

What are the common side effects of Marijuana?

Consuming marijuana at safety-sensitive workplaces can cost lives. Imagine the truckers driving on public roads while under the influence of the drug, the whole picture is terrible. Following are some side effects of marijuana impairment in the workplace:

Side Effects of Marijuana

  • Temporary loss of memory
  • Hallucinations
  • Lack of coordination (impairment to driving safely)
  • Alterations in Behavior
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Addiction
  • Inability to understand
  • Poor sense of decision making

Consideration for employers

For federal marijuana legalization, employers who have a drug-free workplace policy in place should review and update the policy to ensure that it complies with the applicable laws and reflects the company's position on marijuana use. This may involve specifying the circumstances under which an employee may use marijuana and still be considered fit for duty, or prohibiting marijuana use altogether.

Employers should also consider how drug testing will be conducted, including the types of tests used and the circumstances in which testing will occur. In some cases, employers may choose to implement a more limited testing policy for marijuana, for example, only testing for marijuana use in safety-sensitive positions.


The legalization of marijuana has created a complex issue for employers, particularly when it comes to employee drug testing. Employers need to educate themselves on the legal and regulatory developments surrounding marijuana legalization.

Employers must review and update their drug-free workplace policies, consider the circumstances under which drug testing will occur, conduct testing in a fair and non-discriminatory manner, and seek guidance from legal counsel as needed.

While deciding whether marijuana use, is legal or illegal, and how it may affect your business goMDnow is ready to assist you with thorough drug screening options designed to give you the confidence your company needs. Contact us today and set your company drug-free.

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