Marijuana Broken down byindustry, the professional services sector is the most prepared formedical use and the least prepared for recreational use. (Photo:Shutterstock)

|

Employers operating in states that have legalized marijuana use may be having a toughtime figuring out how to handle a worker who smoked pot the nightbefore. The employee may or may not still be experiencing some ofthe effects when they punch in for work – whether they sit at adesk or operate heavy machinery.

|

A recent Paychex survey bears out this dilemma foremployers: more than one-third of business owners with fewer than500 employees say they are not yet prepared to manage the impact oflegalized marijuana on the workplace — 34 percent say thisregarding medical marijuana and 38 percent say this regardingmarijuana for recreational use.

|

Related: The impact of medical marijuana on theworkplace

|

The respondents are slightly more prepared to manage legalizedmedical use than recreational use: 42 percent say they are veryprepared to handle someone who smoked pot for medicinal reasons,while 39 percent say this for someone who just wanted to get highto relax. A quarter are somewhat prepared for both (24 percent formedical use and 23 percent for recreational use).

|

Broken down by industry, the professional services sector is themost prepared (70 percent) for medical use and the least preparedfor recreational use (58 percent). Manufacturing andretail/wholesale are the most prepared industries for recreationaluse (tied at 64 percent), while manufacturing is the least preparedfor medical use (64 percent).

|

While the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration continues toconsider marijuana and marijuana-related products as Schedule 1drugs under the Controlled Substances Act, 46 states and theDistrict of Columbia have legalized marijuana or cannabidiol (CBD)with or without prescriptions (Paychex details state lawspertaining to marijuana, as well as other regulatory issues gainingtraction at the state and local levels).

|

“While marijuana remains illegal at the federal level, thelegislation in each jurisdiction varies and may require businessowners, especially those operating in multiple states, to comply indifferent capacities,” says Paychex's president and CEO MartinMucci. “Developing appropriate policies for industries withemployees operating heavy machinery, for example, may presentunique challenges.”

|

A Paychex HR specialist or another business advisor can helpemployers develop appropriate drug policies that match theirparticular workplace needs, Mucci says.

|

Read more: 

Complete your profile to continue reading and get FREE access to BenefitsPRO, part of your ALM digital membership.

  • Critical BenefitsPRO information including cutting edge post-reform success strategies, access to educational webcasts and videos, resources from industry leaders, and informative Newsletters.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM, BenefitsPRO magazine and BenefitsPRO.com events
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com
NOT FOR REPRINT

© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.

Katie Kuehner-Hebert

Katie Kuehner-Hebert is a freelance writer based in Running Springs, Calif. She has more than three decades of journalism experience, with particular expertise in employee benefits and other human resource topics.