The Arizona Health-related Marijuana Act goes into impact on April 15, 2011. The Act permits a “qualifying patient” with a “debilitating health-related situation” to get a registry identification card from the Arizona Department of Wellness Solutions (ADHS). reliable mail order marijuana can acquire an allowable quantity of marijuana from a registered non-profit healthcare marijuana dispensary and use the marijuana to treat or alleviate particular medical situations. A “qualifying patient” has to be diagnosed by, and receive written certification from a doctor. The Arizona law does not alter marijuana’s status as an illegal drug below federal law.

The Arizona Health-related Marijuana Act is now integrated in the Arizona laws as A.R.S. 36-2801 et seq. The ADHS is the designated agency that has been assigned to make, adopt and enforce a regulatory program for the distribution of marijuana for healthcare use, the setting up of authorized dispensaries and the issuance of identification cards.

How does the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act have an effect on employers? Employers can’t discriminate against a particular person in hiring, terminating or imposing any term or situation of employment or otherwise penalize a individual based on either (1) the person’s status as a cardholder, or (2) a registered qualifying patient’s positive drug test for marijuana components or metabolites, unless the patient utilised, possessed or was impaired by marijuana on the premises of the place of employment or in the course of the hours of employment.

While only a qualifying patient may possibly use medical marijuana, other individuals could also be cardholders subject to protection from discrimination such as (1) the qualifying patient, (2) a designated caregiver or (3) an authorized non-profit medical marijuana dispensary agent.

The Act does make two limited exceptions to anti-discrimination provisions. 1st, there is an exception for employers who would, “shed a monetary or licensing associated benefit below federal law or regulations.” Second, an employer is not required to hire or continue to employ a registered qualifying patient who tests positive for marijuana if the patient used the marijuana on the employer’s premises or during hours of employment.

The Act does not enable workers to use marijuana at the workplace or for the duration of function hours. The Act does not authorize any person to undertake any task beneath the influence of marijuana that would constitute negligence or specialist malpractice. The Act especially forbids any individual to operate motor autos who may possibly be impaired by adequate amounts of marijuana elements or metabolites. Thus, employers may well nonetheless take action against personnel who use marijuana in the workplace or who function below the influence of marijuana.

Many of you might be asking yourself, “Can not marijuana be detected in urine tests for a number of days and even a number of weeks?” The answer is “yes,” on the other hand, the law reads, “the registered qualifying patient shall not be viewed as to be beneath the influence of marijuana solely for the reason that of the presence of metabolites or components of marijuana that appear in insufficient concentration to lead to impairment.” A.R.S. 36-2814(A)(3)

So how does an employer or the ADHS define impairment? Regrettably, the Act does not define “impairment” or “under the influence.” Based on the statute, the mere presence of some level of metabolites or components of marijuana in the program is not adequate. Employers will have to turn into far more astute at recognizing and documenting behaviors and indicators of marijuana impairment.

Luckily, for employers, Arizona based employer organizations such as the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, approached the Arizona State Legislature with regards to the vague and ambiguous language concerning “impairment.” This prompted the State Home of Representatives to present and pass Residence Bill 2541 which fundamentally enables employers to use related recommendations that are identified in “affordable suspicion” policies. The bill has been sent to the State Senate for a vote (watch our weblog for the outcome).

The very best practices strategy for any business enterprise is to have in location a drug and alcohol policy that incorporates at a minimum “post accident” and “affordable suspicion” testing. The other kinds of drug testing involve pre-employment and random. Employers need to document any observed conduct, behavior or appearance that is seemingly altering the employee’s job performance or endangering other people in the workplace.