Washingtonians Getting Fired Due to Medical Marijuana?

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The New York Times reports today on another gray area caused by the gradual decriminalization of pot. Employees with prescriptions for medical marijuana are still being fired for failing drug tests. The Times says that the number of such cases seems to be small. But Doug Hiatt, the lawyer behind a failed initiative that would have legalized pot in Washington, says there are a lot more that are going unreported.

"It's a tremendous problem," he says. "I get two, three, four phone calls a week from people in trouble at work and there's just nothing we can do for them."

Hiatt says he's heard from all kinds -- bus drivers to pilots, many of whom are referred to him through their union -- who ask him if they're going to lose their jobs if they test positive. He says the answer he gives is always the same.

"It's always 'yes.' And it's pretty sickening. I say call your legislators and try to get some protections put in the law but that's a joke," says Hiatt.

Rhode Island is the only state in the country that offers protections to medical marijuana patients for students, tenants and employees.

 
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