Nevada Assemblywoman Dina Neal is sponsoring a bill that would make it illegal for companies to screen potential job candidates because of cannabis in pre-hiring drug tests. Guys. That’s huge!
Cannabis & Employment
While the bill is specific to pre-employment screens only – meaning that an employer could still lawfully take action against any employee who comes to work while under the influence of cannabis – this is still a big step forward. And we’re here for Neal’s reasoning. She says this legislation will help prevent a subclass of folks who becoming “unhire-able” because they legally use cannabis prior to employment. “Those people deserve not to be discriminated against because it is legal and it is lawful — just as lawful as getting drunk,” she said Wednesday during a hearing on the bill.
On the dissenting side was concern that an absence of pre-hiring testing could negatively impact safety, particularly in certain industries. Paul Enos, CEO of the Nevada Trucking Association, submitted an amendment that would allow candidates for “safety sensitive” jobs to be disqualified if cannabis comes up on a pre-employment test.
Interestingly, the majority of opposition to the bill isn’t even related to cannabis. Instead, it stems from a section in the legislation that would prevent employers from giving potential employees character assessments. These tests, like the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and the Caliper Profile, are used to evaluate personality and behavior traits. Enos said these tests are particularly valuable in the trucking industry. They look for certain personality traits (like impulsivity) that may be associated with risky behavior and a higher rate of crashes.
And It’s All Happening in Real Time
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – we are witnessing history! The legalization of cannabis was far overdue, and bills like this are prime examples that citizens were ready for a change.
The committee adjourned without a vote on the measure, so nothing has been decided yet. We’ll be watching with bated breath.