Cannabis use is legal in 15 states and Washington, DC, for adults over the age of 21. And 36 states have legalized medical marijuana. So can you still get drug tested and fired? Unfortunately, the laws are still evolving and a medical card may help protect you. Each state has a patchwork of appropriate laws to carefully navigate.
Notably, Maine companies are reconsidering drug testing as their adult-use program unrolls. Citing widespread cannabis use and a lack of reliable testing procedures, many Maine companies will drop THC from drug testing protocols. A Portland attorney observed that the simple fact that someone uses marijuana does not mean they’re going to be an unsafe employee.
The vast majority of positive drug tests are for cannabis use. In Maine, 92% of the positive drug tests showed cannabis use. In 2019, employers required 26,000 employee drug tests and 7% or 1,832, were positive. Less than 150 were positive for drugs other than cannabis.
But cannabis is still federally illegal and Federal guidelines require some employees to be tested for cannabis. Jobs that require a commercial driver’s license, maritime licenses, certain educational programs, and jobs requiring the use of a firearm or operation of large equipment will require drug testing for cannabis for the foreseeable future.