The New York Department of Labor (“DOL”) recently published guidance and FAQs entitled “Adult-Use Cannabis And The Workplace – New York Labor Law 201-D” to address questions related to the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (“MRTA”). MRTA legalized marijuana use and possession for adults who are 21 and older, effective March 31, 2021, and amended New York Labor Law Section 201-d, the legal activities law. New York employers may not refuse to hire, employ, discharge, or otherwise discriminate against someone who uses cannabis lawfully while off-duty and off-premises and while not using the employer’s equipment or other property. Some of the key takeaways from the DOL Guidance include: Drug testing for marijuana is not permitted except in very limited circumstances (e.g., the test is required by law); A drug test result cannot serve as a basis for an employer’s conclusion that an employee was impaired by marijuana; The smell of marijuana, by itself, is not evidence of “articulable symptoms of impairment.”

Sean Hocking, Cannabis Law Report, 10/20/2021 21:49:00

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