Although marijuana is legal in Colorado, consuming it can still get you fired. In fact, according to a press release issued by the Colorado Bar Association, there is nothing outlined in either Amendment 20 or Amendment 64 that safeguards the working class hero from being banished to the unemployment line because of legal weed.
Specific verbiage surrounding these measures is a testament that the stoner workforce is being driven to get high at their own risk. "Nothing in this section is intended to require an employer to permit or accommodate the use, consumption, possession, transfer, display, transportation, sale or growing of marijuana in the workplace or to affect the ability of employers to have policies restricting the use of marijuana by employees,” states Amendment 64.
Despite Colorado’s new marijuana laws and the common sense of the average employee -- like knowing not to use marijuana before or during work hours -- it appears marijuana use could justify termination of employment.
"While companies can choose to have different policies, many of them choose to have a 'zero tolerance' policy," says the association. "It’s easy to understand a company saying it will have zero tolerance for employees who sell or distribute marijuana at the worksite, and you probably assume that just possessing it on the job is also grounds for discharge. Likewise, you might assume that using it on the job, even on breaks, can get you fired. But what about just having it in your system when at work? What if you used it the night before, or the month before, and it’s still in your system when you are drug-tested?
"That’s a question that Brandon Coats learned the hard way,” affirms the release. “Coats was a medical marijuana user, who, according to the facts laid out in a recent decision by the Colorado Court of Appeals, Coats v. Dish Network LLC, had never used marijuana while at work. Still, he came up positive on a drug test and was discharged."
A recent survey from the Mountain States Employers found that about 66 percent of companies doing business in Colorado Springs test their employees for marijuana. "Despite its recent legalization in the state, when asked, 96 percent of employers said they do not think marijuana should be omitted from their company drug tests,” according to a separate release. “Because of Amendment 64, nearly 40 percent of employers even worked to make their drug testing policy more stringent."
Mike Adams writes for stoners and smut enthusiasts in HIGH TIMES, Playboy’s The Smoking Jacket and Hustler Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter @adamssoup and on Facebook/mikeadams73.