Articles Posted in Drug Testing


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It’s been a while since we addressed the legalization of medical marijuana in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and what that means for employers. It was about two years ago to be precise.

Last October, I presented on this topic at the SHRM Lehigh Valley “annual” October Conference.  But, many of you weren’t there. And, with the first medical marijuana dispensaries opening for business this weekend, this seems like as good a time as any to update my Pennsylvania peeps on what that means for your workplace.

(The rest of you can connect with me on LinkedIn.) Continue reading

Mr Brainwash Biggie TupacThis may not be Magic vs. Bird or Biggie vs. Tupac. Those battles are too close to call.

But, if I were to ask you which side of the country, east coast or west coast, would offer greater judicial support for the employment rights of medicinal-marijuana cardholders, you’d say west for sure, right?

And you’d be wrong… Continue reading

Last month, the Massachusetts Supreme Court held (here) that a local employer may have a duty to accommodate an employee’s use of medicinal marijuana. You can read more about that decision at Jon Hyman’s Ohio Employer’s Law Blog.

Wait, what? If marijuana is still considered an illegal drug under federal law — it is — what duty could an employer possibly have to accommodate an employee’s use of marijuana, even for medical purposes?

Maybe, it’s not so clear. Continue reading

Pennsylvania is about to become the second Commonwealth in the United States to legalize medical marijuana. (23 states — la di da, states — plus DC currently allow it)

Does this mean that employees with migraines can puff vape pens and eat Cheetos in your break rooms at work? Actually, I’m pretty sure that’s not how it works.

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I’ve blogged (here) that grilling a medical marijuana user about her disability, just before firing the employee, could give rise to a viable disability-discrimination claim. In other words, where the disability (as opposed to the medical marijuana use) motivates the employment action, that’s discrimination.

I’ve blogged before (here) that the Americans with Disabilities Act does not protect illegal drug use by employees. So, if the illegal drug use, and not the disability, motivates a company to fire an employee, that’s perfectly legal.

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An alcoholic employee can present a number of tricky legal issues affecting the workplace. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, there’s a certain dichotomy. That is, alcoholism is a disability under the Act. However, an employer can ban alcohol in the workplace and require that employees not be under the influence of alcohol.

But what about an alcoholic employee, who, while remaining sober at work, seeks a leave of absence to treat?

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“Doing What’s Right – Not Just What’s Legal”