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Employees and medical marijuana in Florida

Medical marijuana will now be legal for many Florida employees to use to treat their illnesses. These employees will not face the threat of criminal prosecution for their marijuana use; however, they could still lose their jobs.

Although many employees have heard that life-transforming medical marijuana will now be legally available to them, some have not heard that using the medicine could put them in danger of termination if their employers don't agree with their marijuana use. This is the case even if the marijuana is prescribed by a doctor. One resident of Fort Myers said that this situation is unfair, especially if the employee has an identification card for medical marijuana.

This situation could change if legislators decide to include marijuana as an acceptable drug to treat disabilities. If the person taking the medically prescribed drug can claim disability status, then firing him or her for marijuana use won't be possible, as long as they can still perform their job duties.

Other states have encountered a similar issue relating to employees and medical marijuana use. Minnesota, Delaware and Arizona have created laws that protect people who use marijuana with medical authorization. Hopefully, the Florida legislature will respond in kind, so that individuals using this medically available drug will be protected by anti-discrimination laws.

Do you feel that you were discriminated against on the job? By contacting a Florida employment law attorney, you can determine whether you lost your job inappropriately, and whether you may have a claim for financial damages in court.

Source:, "Medical marijuana a gray area for employers," Jan. 13, 2017

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