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Amazon Urges Delivery Partners Not To Screen For Cannabis In Bid To Recruit Drivers

“If one of my drivers crashes and kills someone and tests positive for marijuana, that’s my problem, not Amazon’s,” one company owner said anonymously.

By Maureen Meehan

Amazon.com, Inc.is asking its delivery partners to openly advertise that they don’t screen applicants for marijuana use in an effort to address the shortage of the company’s delivery drivers, according to Bloomberg.

In June, the e-commerce giant stopped testing for workplace cannabis use for most of its on-site positions, apart from those regulated by the Department of Transportation. Now, the company is urging its contractors and partners to stop testing their drivers for marijuana use, saying the move is necessary to increase job applications by as much as 400%. Amazon noted that screening for cannabis reduces prospective applicants by up to 30%.

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Different Views, Tough Decisions: Though some delivery companies apparently agree that screening for weed is among the main reasons for the nation’s ongoing driver shortage, others have chosen to continue screening applicants, citing insurance and liability implications.

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“If one of my drivers crashes and kills someone and tests positive for marijuana, that’s my problem, not Amazon’s,” one company owner told Bloomberg anonymously due to Amazon discouraging its partners from talking to the media.

Many companies that have chosen not to screen applicants for marijuana are still screening for other drugs like opiates and amphetamines, which, according to one owner, more drivers pass.

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Amazon’s advice to counter its own driver shortage is consistent with other internal policies around marijuana use as well as the company’s advocacy for marijuana legalization, in which Amazon has correctly cited the fact that communities of color are disproportionately affected by cannabis prohibition.

Zero Tolerance For Working While Impaired: However, Amazon says it will continue to have zero tolerance for working while impaired and will treat workers’ consumption of marijuana on the job the same as alcohol use.

“If a delivery associate is impaired at work and tests positive post-accident or due to reasonable suspicion, that person would no longer be permitted to perform services for Amazon,” an Amazon spokeswoman said in a statement, according to Bloomberg.

This article originally appeared on Benzinga and has been reposted with permission.

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