Could Ending Cannabis Testing Solve Labor And Supply Chain Issues? Here's What Rep. Blumenauer Says

After a tentative deal between unions and railway companies, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) discussed the labor and supply chain issues and other aspects of cannabis reform, saying that a possible solution to solve them would be by ending employment-related cannabis testing policies.

In a recent C-SPAN Washington Journal appearance Blumenauer said the railway workers' pact is "good news" calling their situation intolerable.

“A lot of these shortcomings in terms of the supply chain are that people do not qualify for the jobs because they’ve used marijuana sometime in the last six weeks, which doesn’t affect their ability to do their job, but it throws them out of the consideration,” Blumenauer added.

As Marijuana Moment reported, “working on the railroad requires specialized skills, and while those jobs are generally well paid...” There’s been an erosion of workplace benefits and job security creating tensions and contributing to supply chain issues.

In addition, Blumenauer added that part of the solution would be to eliminate drug testing mandates for cannabis, which discourages potential applicants and can lead to skilled workers being fired or punished, even if they are not under the influence while they work.

The passage of the Medical Marijuana Research Act in July will substantially expand scientific research on marijuana, including allowing scientists to study dispensary products. However, the legislation does not yet specifically address marijuana policies in the workplace.

MMJ For VA & Cannabis ‘Plus’ Banking Safe

During his appearance, Blumenauer also mentioned two other marijuana reform laws that Congress plans to pass. Namely, the law that would promote access to medical cannabis for military veterans, and the legislation that focuses on cannabis banking reform.

The co-chair of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus noted that talks on an ongoing package of incremental cannabis reforms are making positive progress. Moreover, “SAFE Plus” omnibus legislation “is expected to provide protections for banks that work with state-legal marijuana businesses and also address other “racial justice” issues,” the congressman concluded.

Weed in the American Workplace: Its Legal Treatment

According to a 2021 Cannabis Jobs Report by Bruce Barcott, Beau Whitney, and Janessa Bailey for Leafly LFLY, legal cannabis now supports 321,000 full-time American jobs.

Related to the above, Benzinga's Andrew Ward researched the topic and spoke with sources inside and outside the cannabis industry to better understand how cannabis fits into US workplaces.

Image by El Planteo

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