Sacramento, CA: California employees who use cannabis medicinally in compliance with state law may be fired for failing a workplace drug test, the Third District Court of Appeals ruled this week.
The ruling upheld a Superior Court decision to dismiss a suit brought by a medical cannabis patient who was fired by his employer after testing positive for THC on a workplace drug screen. The patient brought suit, arguing that his dismissal was discriminatory on the basis of disability and violated the state's Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA).
"Because the possession and use of marijuana is illegal under federal law, a court has no legitimate authority to require an employer to accommodate an employee's use of marijuana, even if it is for medicinal purposes and thus legal under California law," Presiding Justice Arthur Scotland determined. "If FEHA is to be extended to compel such an accommodation, that is a public policy decision that must be made by the Legislature, or by the electorate via initiative, and not by the courts."
The case is Ross v. Ragingwire Telecommunications, Inc. 05 S.O.S. 4364.
For more information, please contact Keith Stroup, NORML Legal Counsel, at (202) 483-5500.