Stop discriminating against marijuana

| Print |  Email
Sunday, April 01, 2007

Marijuana users are tired of being treated as criminals. Your article [THE FIX, February] noted some 14% of Oregonians have used marijuana in the past year. Some companies have stated that there are highly skilled workers who test positive for cannabis. Marijuana has a long history of discrimination.

As a person who was registered in the medical marijuana program and has a long and safe experience with the drug, I can note that the drug is not as dangerous as most other drugs. It is even safer than aspirin.

Our drug-testing system is broken and needs fixing. The National Institute on Drug Abuse, a federal agency under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, reported in 1988 that urine testing for marijuana or cannabis does not detect the actual drug (THC), the primary psychoactive ingredient in the flowering tops of the cannabis plants, and that urine testing for marijuana or cannabis does not indicate impairment or influence at the time the urine sample was collected.

In hearings before the Oregon Senate Business, Transportation and Workforce Committee it was noted that urine testing for cannabis or marijuana couldn’t determine fitness for duty in any workplace setting. Employers must find some other means for determining workplace fitness.

The negative attitude by employers toward marijuana users is unjustified, especially when employees are allowed to drink alcohol with no penalties.

Soon the day will come when urine testing will be outlawed and employers will face hefty lawsuits for their discriminatory attitudes.

Douglas J. Heuer
Salem

You are not going to make progress with the drug problem until you stop the “war on some drugs.” Look at three things: caffeine, prescription drugs and alcohol.

Consumption of 10 or more cups of coffee a day (1000 mg of caffeine) is a disease known as caffeinism. People sensitive to caffeine can become addicted with one cup (100mg) a day. A worker can get totally wired on caffeine and that is OK.

If you think I am wrong about this, try an experiment. Randomly select a group of office workers and get them to agree to a three or four-day meeting. Once there, allow no caffeine in any form and see what happens. Be sure to have a medical professional on hand. Caffeine is a serious drug.

What about a worker taking strong beta-blockers? What about the guy who goes on a bender from 6 p.m. Friday until 2 a.m. Monday, or needs a drink at lunch to make it through the day? Is he safer and more productive than the guy who had a beer and a joint with friends on Friday night?

As long as you allow caffeine, alcohol and prescription-drug impaired people at work, you appear unreasonable to other workers who consider themselves responsible users of some other substance.

These people care enough to never use anything on a workday. They have pride in their work. Don’t treat them like junkies.

Myles J. Swift
Computer Assistance
Creswell

Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

Inside the Box

September 2015
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
BY GINA BINOLE

Screening for “culture fit” has become an essential part of the hiring process. But do like-minded employees actually build strong companies — or merely breed consensus culture?


Read more...

Quake as metaphor

Linda Baker
Tuesday, July 14, 2015
071515-earthquakia-thumbBY LINDA BAKER

The Big One serves as an allegory for Portland, a city that earns plaudits for lifestyle and amenities but whose infrastructure is, literally, crumbling.


Read more...

Wildcards

Guest Blog
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
072815fergusonthumbBY JASON NORRIS

Uncertainty in Greece and China, along with potential interest rate hikes mean investors are looking at the market and nervously questioning where they should be invested.


Read more...

The 10 most successful crowdfunding campaigns in Oregon

The Latest
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
081915-crowdfundingmainBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

One of the hottest new investment trends has proven quite lucrative for some companies.


Read more...

Preserving the Legacy

July/August 2015
Monday, July 13, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | PHOTOS BY JASON E. KAPLAN

A New York floral and gift business takes on the iconic Harry & David brand.


Read more...

Brain Storm

July/August 2015
Monday, July 13, 2015
BY CAMILLE GRIGSBY-ROCCA

Can the brave new world of neurotechnology help an OHSU surgeon find a cure for obesity?


Read more...

The Private 150: From Strength to Strength

July/August 2015
Monday, July 13, 2015
BY KIM MOORE

Revenues in Oregon's private, for profit sector maintained solid growth as the economy continued to rebound.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS