Now, the truth is that marijuana legalization has a significant impact on the entire country. Using marijuana is definitely something which causes both long-term and short-term changes to your behavior and when there is work involved, the things are a bit more complicated. An employee using marijuana can definitely have an adverse impact on your business, associates and the relationships with the public.
Now, there are quite a few different things that have to be taken into account when discussing whether medical marijuana affects the abilities of the employee. With this in mind, let’s have a look at a few important factors.
Are employees impaired?
The first thing that you need to consider is that typical marijuana smokers usually experience a high which is going to last about two hours. Physiological as well as behavioral effects will generally return to the base about three to four hours after the beginning of the use. However, the ability to filter out irrelevant information as well as the overall speed with which the regular person would process information could get impacted for about 24 hours after the use.
There was a recent research conducted between a few pilots. Nine of them tried to fly a simulator after using marijuana and seven of them underperformed 24 hours later.
Increased injuries, accidents as well as absenteeism
Now, it’s also very important to note that employees who test positive for marijuana have 55% more industrial accidents. This is particularly decisive. 85% more injuries are also observed and the absenteeism rates are at least 75% higher than those who actually test negative.
The National institute of Drug Abuse managed to cite a few different studies which actually backed up conventions such as increased absences, worker’s compensation claims, job turnover as well as accidents as a whole.
However, another factor is to be particularly well comprehended as well. Medical marijuana and regular usage of leisure marijuana have nothing in common. Medical marijuana is being used when you have a diagnosed and recognized condition which is subjected to treatment with the drug. This is very important for quite a few reasons.
1. Users do not abuse
A lot of marijuana smokers actually use more than they should in order to get a more significant high. This is something that medical marijuana users are not allowed to do and they don’t do it accordingly. The reason is quite simple, actually. This is mainly due to the fact that they have to use a certain controlled amount of marijuana in order for it to be effective. The treatment is authorized and verified by the treating medical professional, which is something very important to consider.
2. It’s clean
Medical marijuana is clean and it’s used in a controlled manner. Unlike recreational usage which is usually done for the fun and relaxation of it, medical marijuana is also clean – this means that there are no chemical components which are going to cause complications.
3. It’s controlled
That’s just it – usage of medical marijuana is also controlled so it does not coincide with your work process. This is particularly critical and it needs to be accounted for when it comes to it. Medical marijuana users are not impaired at work because they are scheduled to use it at a certain time.
In any case, while the truth is that marijuana users experience alterations in their abilities, this could be taken into account and it could be handled properly in order to avoid impairing the work flow. What is more, it’s also important to consider the fact that a lot of companies have very strict employer drug policies.
This is something which is yet to be changed, discussed and altered. The reason for this is that marijuana legalization in the USA is fairly recent and, hence, employers are going to need to adjust and adapt their policies in order to accommodate it. It would be particularly inappropriate and rather discriminating to keep the existing drug policies which do not allow usage in any kind, for the most part. When a person has a documented condition and he is legally allowed to treat it with marijuana, this shouldn’t reflect his position in the company that he works for.
However, there are quite a lot of different things that need to be taken into account when it comes to it. This is a very sensitive and current topic as the marijuana legalization is definitely turning the tides. It’s important to make sure that everything is handled as per the highest industry standards and that is definitely necessary for the sake of both employers and employees. This is an undertaking which needs to be driven by both parties in order to make sure it’s taken care of properly – it is a two-way endeavor.