Oregon ranks No. 1 for failed drug tests in the workplace

Date: October 02, 2018

For the third year in a row, Oregon has claimed the No.1 spot for positive drug tests for marijuana.

A study by the Drug Testing Index found Oregon had the most failed workplace drug tests in 2017 with 4.64 percent of them testing positive. This is up from 2016 when the percentage was 4.5 percent and 2015 when it was at 3.43 percent.

According to Oregon Live, the rise in failed workplace drug tests over the years can easily be attributed to the state’s legalization of recreational marijuana for people 21 and over. Although recreational marijuana use has been legalized in Oregon, it is still illegal at the federal level, and employers still have the right to test, choose to not hire, or fire employees when they test positive for marijuana.

Some employers are considering opting to take marijuana off the list of drugs tested for in the workplace, according to the Denver Post. NFIB has argued multiple times in amicus briefs, “that any state law that seeks to force employers to accommodate an employee’s drug habit is invalid on its face. Such a law would be preempted by federal law, which recognizes the employers right to take corrective action—including termination—for employees abusing drugs.”

Beth Milito, senior executive counsel for NFIB’s Small Business Legal Center, says “Experts agree it’s a good idea to have a clear, well-thought-out, drug testing policy and drug free workplace policy. Consult with an employment attorney in your state to develop such policies”

NFIB’s legal center also offers a model employee handbook to help get small business owners started on creating workplace policies.


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