Monday, April 15, 2024

Maine Businesses Can’t Discriminate Against Employees For Using Marijuana

Cannabis users in Maine no longer have to worry about their consumption habits during their off hours. Employees can no longer be discriminated against by employers for cannabis usage, including other marijuana-infused products, according to new state laws that recently went into effect.

In addition, the Maine Department of Labor has removed marijuana from the list of drugs employers can test for in its “model” applicant drug-testing policy, according to employment law firm Littler Mendleson PC.

The law only applies to those 21 years of age or older, and denies employers the right to hire someone based on their marijuana usage or even disciplining them for using. However, it should be noted that this right does not extend to those under the influence at work. Those who show up to work high can still receive discipline, though a positive test won’t be enough proof that someone is or was under the influence, a spokesperson told The Independent.

Maine is one of nine states to legalize recreational marijuana usage. However, Maine governor Paul LePage vetoed a bill to regulate and tax marijuana, leading to a legislative compromise that delays any retail market coming to fruition within the state.

LePage explained that, “Until I clearly understand how the federal government intends to treat states that seek to legalize marijuana, I cannot in good conscience support any scheme in state law to implement expansion of legal marijuana in Maine.”


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