cannabisnews.com: Employers Grapple With Medical Marijuana Use 





Employers Grapple With Medical Marijuana Use 
Posted by CN Staff on April 16, 2007 at 20:12:37 PT
By Stephanie Armour, USA Today
Source: USA Today 
USA -- On a typical weekday, stockbroker Irvin Rosenfeld has a marijuana cigarette before work, then goes to his firm's smoking area for another after he gets to the office. By day's end, he usually has smoked more than a half-dozen joints  and handled millions of dollars' in clients' holdings.There's nothing illegal about it. Rosenfeld, 54, of Fort Lauderdale, has a condition that causes benign tumors in the long bones of his body. 
After trying to control pain by taking narcotics such as Dilaudid, he persuaded the U.S. government to put him in a test program that gives marijuana to people with certain illnesses. His pain is now manageable, he says."I've smoked 10 to 12 marijuana cigarettes a day for 25 years," says Rosenfeld, adding he gets no euphoric effect from the drug. "All my clients know I use it. Without it, I wouldn't be able to work." His firm, Newbridge Securities, supports his use of marijuana and says it hasn't hurt his performance.In Florida, Rosenfeld is an exception to state law that bans marijuana's use in any situation. But at a time when the use of medical marijuana is expanding  this month, New Mexico became the 12th state to allow it  the issue is raising a range of ethical and liability questions for employers across the nation.Some companies, wary of marijuana's impact on employee performance, continue to fire those who test positive for the drug, even when its use is sanctioned by their state for medical purposes.Those companies include Columbia Forest Products, a manufacturer of hardwoods based in Oregon, one of the states that allows medical marijuana. Even as the company maintains its zero-tolerance policy toward drug use, it has faced legal action because its company rules conflict with Oregon's medical marijuana law.A few companies, such as Newbridge Securities, have embraced the notion of employees using medical marijuana at work.Meanwhile, there are questions about whether medical marijuana laws would offer any protection to employers if a worker who used marijuana to treat pain ended up injuring others or making a mistake on the job. It's unclear whether such an incident has occurred."The rights of an employer to ensure productivity and safety around machinery and on the job has to take precedence," says Mark Levitt, a labor and employment lawyer in Tampa. "The use of marijuana has an effect on employees' ability to perform. That's a big concern for employers." Drug's Effectiveness DebatedMarijuana's effectiveness as a pain reliever is widely debated, and the Food and Drug Administration has not approved it for medical use. It's used by patients with a variety of ailments, including cancer, glaucoma, AIDS or HIV, Crohn's disease, hepatitis C and multiple sclerosis, says the Marijuana Policy Project, a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit organization that supports easing restrictions on the drug.The FDA considers marijuana a controlled substance with a very high potential for abuse and says that the drug has no accepted medical use and that there is a lack of accepted safety data for use under medical supervision. The American Medical Association doesn't support marijuana's medical use but has urged further studies on its effectiveness.Chart: Medical Marijuana Laws By State: http://tinyurl.com/yvf32o Snipped:Complete Article: http://tinyurl.com/28ruubSource: USA Today (US)Author: Stephanie Armour, USA TodayPublished: April 16, 2007Copyright: 2007 USA Today, a division of Gannett Co. Inc.Contact: editor usatoday.comWebsite: http://www.usatoday.com/CannabisNews Medical Marijuana Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/medical.shtml
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Comment #7 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on April 17, 2007 at 14:19:16 PT
On Topic - Marijuana in the office?
Most of us assume that anyone testing positive for marijuana would be instantly fired by his/her employer, but that is not the case for Irvin Rosenfeld of Florida. Not only is he allowed to smoke marijuana, but he is allowed to smoke while actually at his workplace.http://tinyurl.com/3daoh9I once knew someone who worked at a design firm where they had an office bong. I think it was mostly used at the end of the day, however.
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Comment #6 posted by whig on April 17, 2007 at 10:21:39 PT
Cannabis ordains
And so you are all free.
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Comment #5 posted by whig on April 17, 2007 at 10:21:09 PT
what's going on?
Insubordination
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Comment #4 posted by thestales on April 17, 2007 at 08:12:03 PT
Contradiction
"His firm, Newbridge Securities, supports his use of marijuana and says it hasn't hurt his performance." "The use of marijuana has an effect on employees' ability to perform. That's a big concern for employers."So which is it? Is it a big concern if it affects preformance in a positive way? 
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on April 17, 2007 at 06:22:44 PT
Rockford Pastor Supports Use of Medical Marijuana
April 17, 2007SPRINGFIELD  During his 30 years as a Presbyterian pastor, the Rev. Bob Hillenbrand said, he encountered a number of folks whose treatment could have been enhanced by medical marijuana.Hillenbrand, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in Rockford, recently joined an effort to allow those with debilitating medical conditions to legally possess the drug in Illinois.Snipped:Complete Article: http://www.rrstar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070417/NEWS0107/104170051
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Comment #2 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on April 17, 2007 at 02:09:06 PT
OT - Corporate Cannabis
Will a new marijuana mist become the Aspirin of the twenty-first century?http://tinyurl.com/3yrtnpandNew Zealand "insulted" by Aussie man's "incredibly stupid" desire to have his med mj while on vacation.http://tinyurl.com/2swjl6http://tinyurl.com/35eedr
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Comment #1 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on April 17, 2007 at 01:39:47 PT
People should be judged by performance not pee.
People who are able to function on other prescription and otc meds are allowed to work. People are allowed to use the legal recreational substances nicotene and coffee at work, and while cigarettes have been mostly restricted to the outdoors, many employers still give coffee to workers for free.So there is recognition that some plants and drugs can make people more functional at work when used appropriately. Employers need to learn that cannabis is such a plant.
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