What must CT employers consider with new recreational marijuana laws?

Connecticut Marijuana Legalization 

Governor Lamont signed the bill, which allows those aged 21 or older to possess of 1.5 ounces of marijuana in public and 6 ounces at home from July 1st, with cannabis sales expected to begin in May of 2022.

Connecticut is now the 19th state, along with the District of Columbia, to legalize cannabis for non-medical use.


The bill includes employer protections for maintaining safe workplaces that CBIA and member company representatives advocated for, which include the following:


  • Employers can drug test employees and job applicants and take disciplinary action.
  • Employers can adopt policies prohibiting the possession and use of cannabis in the workplace.
  • No accommodations are required allowing employees to perform job duties under the influence of cannabis or possess or use marijuana in the workplace.
  • Employers may prohibit cannabis use outside the workplace if the employer adopted a policy under the bill’s conditions.
  • Employers are not limited from taking adverse or other employment action upon reasonable suspicion of an employee’s use of cannabis while working or determining that an employee shows specific, articulable symptoms of drug impairment while working.
  • With certain exceptions, an employee or prospective employee aggrieved by a violation of the bill’s employer limitations may, within 90 days after the alleged violation, bring a civil action.


Next Steps for Connecticut Employers

It is a good idea for employers to begin thinking about the impact on CT’s marijuana legalization and how to create company policies, update your employee handbook, and answer questions regarding how the legalization of marijuana can impact operations. Staffworks is happy to discuss these new ideas with our clients and we are available to help.

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