D.C. Council Approves the Cannabis Employment Protections Amendment Act of 2022

D.C. Council Approves the Cannabis Employment Protections Amendment Act of 2022
CANNANNEW REPORT

The District of Columbia is on the verge of joining other states and localities that prohibit testing applicants and employees for cannabis use as a condition of employment. On June 7, 2022, the D.C. Council approved the Cannabis Employment Protections Amendment Act of 2022 (Act), now pending review and approval by Mayor Muriel Bowser by July 19, 2022. If signed, the Act will become law after a 60-day congressional review. Donna Glover Reba Letsa Which Employers are Covered by the Act? The Act is broad in that it applies to all private employers in D.C., and it defines an employer in relevant part as “any person, who, for compensation, employs an individual [] and any person acting in the interest of [an] employer, directly or indirectly.” Additionally, the Act applies to most public employers, including the D.C. government and its agencies, but excludes the D.C. court system and the federal government. How Does the Bill Limit Employers and Protect Applicants and Employees? Under the Act, employers cannot refuse to hire, terminate, suspend, fail to promote, demote, or otherwise penalize an applicant or employee (including unpaid interns) because of: their cannabis use, their status as a medical cannabis program patient, or the presence of cannabinoid metabolites in their system (found via a drug test) without additional factors demonstrating impairment. Generally, the Act provides that “impaired by use of cannabis” means the employee is showing “articulable symptoms” while working that “substantially decrease or lessen the employee’s performance [].” Employers also must treat medical cannabis use the same as any other legal use of a controlled substance prescribed by or taken under the supervision of a licensed health care professional. What is the “Safety-Sensitive” Position Exception Under the Act? Employers are permitted to test for cannabis use and discipline employees who hold “safety-sensitive” positions. A safety-sensitive position is a…

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Source : D.C. Council Approves the Cannabis Employment Protections Amendment Act of 2022

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