The Washington D.C. city council unanimously passed a bill on June 7, 2022 that would protect employees from being fired for using marijuana, both recreationally and medicinally.
The bill, called the Cannabis Employment Protections Amendment Act of 2022, would also ban employers from refusing to hire an employee because of their marijuana use.
There are some exceptions to this legislation, including if the employer is acting under federal guidelines or if the employee consumed marijuana at work or while performing work-related duties.
The bill prohibits the possession, storage, delivery, transfer, display, transportation, sale, purchase, or growing of cannabis at the employee’s place of employment.
Employers must evaluate “medical marijuana to treat a disability in the same manner as it would treat the legal use of a controlled substance prescribed by or taken under the supervision of a licensed healthcare professional,” the bill says.
According to NPR, the bill does not cover people working in “safety-sensitive” occupations such as those who operate heavy machinery, healthcare workers, security guards, and construction workers.
You can read this article from SHRM to learn more about “What Is a ‘Safety-Sensitive’ Job Under State Marijuana Laws?”
There are some exceptions for people who work for the Department of Transportation. The department has been asked to change its drug testing policies for marijuana. This is especially important because there is a driver shortage.
After approval from the Washington D.C. city council, The Cannabis Employment Protections Amendment Act of 2022 bill was then sent to D.C. mayor, Muriel Bowser (D).
A month later, in July, Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) officially signed the bill. According to a report from Marijuana Moment states, “[The bill] must still undergo a congressional review period before formally becoming law.”