Ohio's medical marijuana law will not protect patients in the workplace: Samantha Santoscoy (Opinion)
Published on 7/26/16
Ohio was the 26th state to legalize marijuana for medical use, but yet so many still avoid using their only medicine for fear of testing positive during a workplace drugtest. It is well known and scientifically proven that THC, the primary compound in marijuana, stays in the user's body far after the drug's effects have worn off. So why are patients still being fired from their jobs for using their state legalized medicine? While marijuana remains under Schedule I, the federal government doesn't condone it's use medically, no matter how many patients use it for treatment, and this allows employers to continue testing and firing employees despite prior work ethic. Until the DEA pushes to reschedule from Schedule I, it will take state government's interference to protect it's patients similar to other states like, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, and Rhode Island.
With these state governments refusing to take action, it may be up to the federal government to establish protection for employed patients. Marijuana is currently listed as a Schedule I controlled substance, which means it is federally illegal and considered to have no medicinal value. As a result, federal laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act, which are ideally situated for protecting patients, do not apply to medical marijuana.