Congressman Wants Changes in Marijuana Testing of Truck Drivers

Congressman Wants Changes in Marijuana Testing of Truck Drivers
CANNANNEW REPORT

Science currently cannot determine whether drivers are too impaired by cannabis to get behind the wheel. That’s because THC, the chemical ingredient in cannabis that causes the high, remains detectable in urine for as long as a month. Despite this, the federal government continues to sideline truck drivers for marijuana use, even in the middle of a supply chain crisis. Thanks to federal law, which lists marijuana as an illegal substance, marijuana testing of truck drivers continues nationwide, despite the test’s flaws. It’s led a congressman to ask that the federal government change the rules. Citing numbers from the federal Department of Transportation, Rep. Earl Blumenauer, a Democrat from Oregon, noted recently that the DOT has disqualified tens of thousands of truck drivers from working in the past two years because they tested positive for THC on a drug test. “These disqualifications deny people the right to earn a living, reduce the workforce when drivers are desperately needed, and penalize people of color and patients who legally use medical cannabis,” Blumenauer wrote in a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “This crisis must be treated with urgency.” A Call to Change Drug Test Policies In his letter, Blumenauer wrote that the DOT should “rapidly reform” policies that govern marijuana testing of truck drivers, allowing many drivers to return to service. He also called for a focus on developing an accurate test for marijuana impairment. He argued that current policy has a widespread impact, leading some people to avoid the profession knowing the drug testing requirements currently in place. But he put most of his focus on how the policy unfairly penalizes current drivers for using cannabis, which is legal in many states, and for the impact it has on the economy. “While no one wants impaired drivers on the road,…

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