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Yes, Nevada first US state to ban employer discrimination for weed use

An article posted on Facebook in South Africa claims Nevada has become the first state in the US to ban employers from discriminating against potential new hires for positive marijuana tests.

“Nevada becomes first state to ban employers from testing workers for weed,” the headline reads.

It says state has “passed a bill telling employers that they can no longer refuse to hire workers on the basis of their testing positive for cannabis”.

It was flagged as possibly false by Facebook’s fact-checking system, prompting Africa Check to investigate.

We found both claims – that Nevada has made hiring discrimination for marijuana use illegal, and is the first US state to do so – to be correct.

Law to come into effect January 2020

The bill, known as Assembly Bill 132, was signed on 5 June 2019 and will go into effect in January 2020. It will protect potential employees from discrimination against positive marijuana tests. Employers in Nevada will not be allowed to refuse employment based on a positive marijuana test.

When the bill becomes law in January, it will be the first legislation of its kind in the US. New York state has passed a similar bill that bans marijuana testing altogether, but that will only take effect in March 2020.

The state of Maine passed a bill banning discrimination of employment based on “legal” use in 2018. But the Maine law only covers medical use of marijuana, not recreational use, as the Nevada law does. – Sam Ancer


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