The Rochester, New York City Council is considering legislation that would eliminate pre-employment cannabis drug testing for city workers except for public safety positions and those requiring a commercial driver’s license, the Democrat & Chronicle reports.
Mayor Lovely Warren and City Council President Loretta Scott submitted the legislation last week and, in a letter to the City Council, said that removal of the pre-employment drug testing requirement “avoids unfair discrimination against individuals for an activity conducted during non-work hours that may have no effect on their ability to perform the job for which they are applying.”
In an interview with the Democrat & Chronicle, Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Robert Duffy – a former police chief – noted that THC can remain in the body long after the point of intoxication, while alcohol disappears after a matter of hours and that, “to be fair, those types of things have to be considered.” He added that some chamber members have already stopped testing for THC and there is considerable discussion in human resource circles around the region.
On May 10, New York City will ban all employers from drug testing applicants for THC. In Nevada and Maine – both of which have legalized cannabis for adults – it is illegal to deny someone employment because of a positive drug test for THC.
The Rochester City Council will consider the bill in committee next month before deciding to bring it to a vote. If approved, the changes would take effect immediately.