Discussions on medical marijuana taking place

April 21, 2016

The Iowa Legislature is considering legislation that would expand the existing cannabidiol act in Iowa to include additional medical conditions. The current bill, HF 2384 defines debilitating medical condition to include: intractable epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and cancer. The existing law was a pilot project set to sunset in 2017 and only included individuals who had intractable epilepsy. The new legislation brings in individuals who could also be your employees. ABI is working to make certain employers have protections in the new proposal. This bill could move at any time and is very fluid. Staff Contact: Nicole Crain.

Currently, 23 states and the District of Columbia allow medical marijuana in some form. The laws and regulations surrounding legalized marijuana, employment and the workforce are still being written. State laws allowing for marijuana use are in direct conflict with federal law, which poses challenges for employers with federal contracts.

Employers’ drug-free workplace policies have been challenged in multiple states. So far courts have sided with employers and their right to fire employees who use marijuana in any form if it violates employment policy.

This is an evolving area with potential for litigation. If you have feedback about how you handle medical marijuana regulations in other states, please contact ABI. Remember to sign up for the Workplace Drug Testing seminar at ABI next Wednesday where you will receive the most up-to-date information on this legislation.