NBC Connecticut Interviews Megan Carannante about New Cannabis Rules for CT Employers
Megan Y. Carannante, co-chair of Pullman & Comley’s Labor, Employment Law and Employee Benefits practice, was interviewed on NBC Connecticut about new cannabis rules for Connecticut employers in effect as of July 1, 2022.
Anchor Leslie Mayes asked Megan what employees need to know about the new workplace cannabis rules. Megan primarily represents employers, so she adopted the employee point-of-view and responded:
"What employees need to be aware of is that there are new rules that go into effect with regard to protections that they may be provided depending on the type of employer that they work for. And these protections protect them from off-duty use if they work for a non-exempt employer, and essentially equate off-duty cannabis use with off duty alcohol use, for example. So if someone were to go apply for a job and they were to test positive, and they were going to work for a non-exempt employer, that alone would not be a basis to reject them from hiring, whereas it may have been in the past."
Leslie asked Megan to clarify if employers can still restrict off-duty cannabis use for their employees. Megan explained:
"In the pre-employment process, an employee is going to work for a non-exempt employer, they would not be able to suffer any type of consequence for testing positive. But for a current, existing employee of a non-exempt employer, should the employer wish to impose restrictions with regard to off-duty use having to do with cannabis on their employees, they may do so. But they have to set that policy forth in a written policy for all of their current employees. And they have to provide notice of that policy to their employees so that the employees are aware of that."