A workplace drug test in New York may never look the same again. Per the state’s Department of Labor (DOL), employers there are not allowed any longer to test most workers, with limited exceptions, for cannabis THC. This is a bold step in the United States, as the legality of cannabis ranges from fully illegal, to instated laws against penalization for positive tests. Faye Caldwell, an attorney and advisor who specializes in drug testing laws, said in a video the DOL’s new rules on the issue of workplace testing for cannabis represent a “seismic” policy change. “This is the first state in the nation to ever enter this,” she said. “In most other states, there may be no ability to take action in many circumstances, but there was no prohibition on testing. So this will make some massive changes for employers who have employees in the state of New York and have drug testing policies.” Per this law, in connection to cannabis use, employers may not refuse to hire, employ or license someone, terminate employment, or discriminate against an individual through compensation, promotion, and terms, conditions or privileges of employment. This means that companies that drug test in New York may no longer be able to do so.
Changes for Companies that Drug Test in New York
Working employees may not interfere with their employer’s obligation to provide a safe and healthy workplace, as required by state and federal workplace safety laws. This could manifest as a decreased or lessened performance of duties or tasks or an introduction of recognized hazards. Employers may also prohibit cannabis use during breaks (paid or unpaid), meal periods, and all time the employee is actually engaged in work, even if the actual job site is exited. Further, prohibitions on cannabis use in a company vehicle are permitted even where an employee has use of the vehicle after regular business hours or work shifts.
New York employers retain the right to continue to punish workers who possess or consume cannabis while on the job or use of the employer’s equipment or other property. Additionally, off duty use is still prohibited for those who are regulated by the federal Department of Transportation, as well as students, volunteers, independent contractors, individuals working out of familial obligation, and those under the age of 21.
New York Drug Test Laws for Employers
Although employers may continue to punish employees for on-the-job active impairment, proving impairment is more difficult and must go beyond mere odor detection. With no marketplace device that can test for active impairment (available THC tests can show traces for weeks after consumption), employers must show that a given worker “manifests specific articulable symptoms of impairment” in order to punish them over on-duty cannabis use. Those symptoms must “decrease or lessen the performance of their duties or tasks” and “interfere with an employer’s obligation to provide a safe and healthy workplace, free from recognized hazards, as required by state and federal occupational safety and health laws,” per the DOL.
This revolutionary change in workplace law is a hot topic. The next CannaCon show, sponsored by Rocket Seeds, is located at the heart of it, in beautiful Manhattan, inside the spacious Javits Center, at 429 11th Avenue. With new laws clarifying guidelines for companies that drug test in New York, this city is solidly on its way to becoming the next cannabis cultivation powerhouse.
Here is what interested parties need to know:
- Show dates are January 7-8, 2022.
- Both days of the show begin at 10 am, and end at 5 pm.
- Single-day Expo passes are available, as well as Expo & Seminar passes.
- Advance tickets will no longer be sold starting January 6, 2022.
- No medical card is needed.
- Proof of completed COVID-19 vaccination is required, as well as the wearing of masks for all event organizers, contractors, exhibitors and attendees due to the rules of the venue.
Insightful and invaluable seminars will be featured. One example is “Content to Conversion – Grow your Biz organically with social media”, by Martine Cadet. This marketing and branding talk will explore ad-cost free marketing aimed to grow business through client connections. Another is Sam Andras’s seminar titled “An Architect’s Perspective: A Virtual Fly-Through of Cultivations & Dispensaries”, which involves a virtual cultivation facility and dispensary experience via a bird’s-eye view.
Start 2022 in the hub of the Northeast with CannaCon, the nation’s leading business-to-business cannabis conference. Grow your cannabis industry business through seminars, networking, and an incredible trade show with exhibitors from all over the United States. This is a must-attend event for anyone looking to take their involvement in the cannabis and CBD world to a whole new level.