While marijuana is legal in Colorado, there may still be some people that find it unacceptable, including a potential employer. It’s true you won’t be sent to jail for smoking pot in some U.S. states, but employers might still decide to fire you for the activity.
Lighting Up & Getting Fired
Yes, there are still some consequences for smoking marijuana. There is no add-on to the law that forbids an employer from conducting drug tests of their own.
Don’t believe us? Then read Amendment 64, the regulation that legalized cannabis in Colorado. As per this amendment, “Nothing in this section is intended to… affect the ability of employers to have policies restricting their use of marijuana by employees.”
And smoking pot can affect your employment in other states too. If you read Initiative 71 in D.C., for example, you will notice that while it legalizes owning marijuana there, it also allows employers to fire workers who use pot, even if using outside of the workplace.
We agree that it makes sense to a certain extent. For example, a taxi company should not allow its drivers to smoke while on the road. In this instance, the employer action would be justifiable. But what about if the marijuana is for medical purposes?
While 24 states currently approve the use of doctor-prescribed medical marijuana, unfortunately, employers are still within their rights to fire their employees. This point is frustrating given that the employer is not also checking if the workers are drinking or smoking cigarettes when off the work premises.
Until pot eventually gets legalized across the entire U.S., there will still be employers who remain certain that smoking pot is dangerous. So, smoking marijuana in Colorado and some other states can still have consequences for you, even if it’s not going to jail. Be wise about your use of marijuana and recognize that while it has many benefits, it may not be worth losing your job.