New Orleans City Council Moves for No Cannabis Testing for Government Employees
Louisiana’s medical marijuana program has sparked the cannabis conversation across legislation in 2022. There has been heightened attention on the limited number of cultivators, decriminalization in New Orleans, and more comprehensive access for patients with qualifying conditions for medical marijuana.
Now, the New Orleans City Council has approved a resolution to cease testing government employees for cannabis and remove the stipulation that cannabis use prevents an employee from being hired or fired.
Citing progressive information on cannabis and the harms that vilifying cannabis has caused, New Orleans looks to reduce its restrictions on cannabis use and encourage positive change at the Government level.
New Orleans Resolution to Reevaluate Cannabis Restrictions
New Orleans City Council Approves Resolution on Cannabis
The city of New Orleans has maintained an open-minded approach with cannabis, recently decriminalizing small possession of marijuana and encouraging pharmacies to sell cannabis to medical patients.
While other areas could land you jail time for simple possession of marijuana, New Orleans has taken the opposite approach, and it's extending to government staff as well.
An approved resolution from the New Orleans City Council looks to reevaluate and amend the city’s internal stance on cannabis and employees, addressing things like the mass incarceration of people for meaningless cannabis charges and unreliable testing windows that don't accurately determine intoxication relative to work.
The resolution urges the Civil Service Commission to revisit its pre-employment testing requirements and amend regulations on cannabis use by city employees to match modern times.
What Does this Resolution Mean for New Orleans?
The resolution marks several important distinctions for legislation, even if it’s merely a resolution drafted by a city council.
For one, it recognizes the unjust criminalization of cannabis charges and realizes the fact that modern testing for cannabis severely lacks accuracy and relevance.
Several clauses in the resolution identify the strong feelings of the City Council:
“…this legislation signals the Council's strong desire to eliminate the
debilitating and needlessly punitive legal regime surrounding cannabis - one that has resulted not only in the mass incarceration of tens of thousands of our citizens but also in their needless exclusion from employment and economic opportunities;”
“…in which long-distant cannabis use can result in a positive test because of the slow rate at which it metabolizes - represents a woefully inadequate and imprecise tool for diagnosing whether an individual is qualified for employment or even whether an employee engaged in a workplace accident was actually under the influence of drugs;”
It’s not very often that we see legislators in any capacity reference the abysmal failure of drug-screening related cannabis, and it’s even less rare to see legislators discuss the negative impact of the war on marijuana and its capacity to harm citizens.
Louisiana Looks to Loosen Its Stance on Marijuana
Pending Legislation and Public Opinion Furthering Marijuana Cause
Louisiana has proposed a lot of potential changes to the marijuana industry this year, and nearly all of them include a more expansive approach to medical marijuana. There’s even rustlings of recreational cannabis.
There’s an overwhelming amount of marijuana-positive attention from both legislators and the public, suggesting that Louisiana is leaning into cannabis rather than away from it.
And while there are certainly legislators who oppose broadening the marijuana industry in Louisiana, the narrative seems to suggest that the public and its representatives may have more in common on this issue.
Louisiana Still Needs a Push in the Right Direction with Cannabis
There’s no doubt that there’s a difference between Louisiana as a whole and New Orleans proper. While New Orleans looks to decriminalize cannabis possession, the State itself remains static with its approach to prosecuting cannabis.
New Orleans has been more progressive than other parts of the State with cannabis, and although it might represent the fairer approach, it’s unclear how much of this will rub off on the rest of the Pelican State.
There is a sense that Democrats want legalization and some Republicans are willing to go along with it. Ultimately, this distraction in the conversation just causes further standstills and delays, which some lawmakers would likely prefer as an alternative to cannabis in Louisiana.
Only time will tell us how close Louisiana will get to expanding its medical marijuana program or installing recreational cannabis, but for now the conversation is happening on all sides.
Get Your Louisiana Medical Marijuana Certification
Louisiana’s medical marijuana program gives legal access to medical cannabis for patients with qualifying conditions. A medical marijuana card in Louisiana can be obtained for many different symptoms, and you can get your medical marijuana card online today!
Getting a medical marijuana card in Louisiana is easier than ever, so beat the lines and get your medical marijuana certification in Louisiana today. You can even get certified for medical marijuana online for ease of use and convenience.
For questions about Louisiana’s medical marijuana program or how to become a medical marijuana patient in Louisiana, consult with one of our trusted doctors and book an online medical marijuana appointment today!
Doctors Who Care.
Relief You Can Trust.
At Louisiana Marijuana Card, our mission is helping everyone achieve wellness safely and conveniently through increased access to medical marijuana. Our focus on education, inclusion, and acceptance will reduce the stigma for our patients by providing equal access to timely information and compassionate care.
Call us at (833) 253-2943, or simply book a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!
Check out Louisiana Marijuana Card’s Blog to keep up to date on the latest medical marijuana news, tips, and information. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to join the medical marijuana conversation in Louisiana!