Amazon Says They’re Not Testing Job Applicants For Marijuana
When you have 16 states where recreational marijuana is legal and 20 or so states where medical marijuana has been given the green light, is it really a surprise to see more and more companies back away from testing for weed in their employees?
Since we're not sitting together as you read this, I'll just go ahead and answer my own question. You've got a tight job market with many companies practically begging would-be workers to come in and apply. Combine that with 36 states having some form of legalized marijuana, and something's got to give.
For Amazon, that thing is drug testing for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana (it's the part that gets you high).
Here's how Amazon describes their new position at AboutAmazon.com:
In the past, like many employers, we’ve disqualified people from working at Amazon if they tested positive for marijuana use. However, given where state laws are moving across the U.S., we’ve changed course. We will no longer include marijuana in our comprehensive drug screening program for any positions not regulated by the Department of Transportation, and will instead treat it the same as alcohol use. We will continue to do impairment checks on the job and will test for all drugs and alcohol after any incident.
That part about the Department of Transportation pretty much means that delivery drivers and others who are behind the wheel for Amazon are still going to be screened for THC, while other Amazon workers can feel free to enjoy marijuana just like they can enjoy alcohol. You can't use it at work, nor will they tolerate you showing up wasted.
It's also worth noting that while states like Illinois have been busy legalizing recreational and medical marijuana, the federal government has not made any such moves. There has been an effort in recent years to try to get our government's Legislative Branch to change all that, but so far it hasn't happened. Amazon is looking to help in the effort to make that change:
And because we know that this issue is bigger than Amazon, our public policy team will be actively supporting The Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act of 2021 (MORE Act)—federal legislation that would legalize marijuana at the federal level, expunge criminal records, and invest in impacted communities. We hope that other employers will join us, and that policymakers will act swiftly to pass this law.
If you're not into any of that, and prefer good, old-fashioned elbow-bending, give one or ten of these a try: