Council hearing set on medical marijuana use in workplace

Council hearing set on medical marijuana use in workplace

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Councilwoman Cherelle Parker will lead a hearing on Wednesday on medical marijuana use in the workplace. – Tribune File Photo City Council will hold a hearing at 10 a.m. Wednesday in its City Hall chambers on the statewide legalization of medical marijuana and the effect it could have on employers and employees. Councilwoman Cherelle Parker, who is leading the hearing, says she hopes to understand the "full implications" of the Medical Marijuana Act on employers and employees in Philadelphia. Parker also says she wants to look at what the city could do to prevent people from being wrongly terminated from work if they are a medical marijuana patient. "If there is anything that this body – the City Council of Philadelphia – or our D.A.’s office can do, for example, to protect employees, I want us to begin acting now, while we are still in the early days of medical marijuana," said Parker. "The MMA was signed into law in April, 2016, and the first dispensaries just opened in the past few months, so this is the first time most Pennsylvanians have had access to medical marijuana," she added. Parker said that she did not plan to introduce any type of legislation until she reviewed the testimonies given at the hearing. She said research was still needed on employees being unfairly and disproportionately targeted at work because of medical marijuana usage. However, Parker did note there are a "few areas of concern" due to the language in the law that gives "vague" protection for employees. "Twenty-nine other states, plus the territories of Guam and Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia have laws regulating the use of medicinal marijuana," said Parker. "Many of these states are several years into implementation of their medical marijuana legislation, and during this time, […]

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