NYC considers ban on pre-employment marijuana tests

Dried marijuana (DEA)

New York City lawmakers are considering a proposal that would prohibit of drug testing by companies for marijuana as a requirement to be hired.

Jumanne Williams is sponsoring the legislation that is set to be introduced on Wednesday.  It would ban companies in the city from testing for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.

Exceptions would be made for safety and security sensitive jobs, like the NYPD, and those tied to a federal or state contract or grant.  The law would go into effect one year after its approval.

New York City has been loosening marijuana rules.  Starting in September, the New York Police Department started to issue criminal summonses to most people caught smoking marijuana in public instead of arresting them.  People with summonses will have to go to court and pay a $100 fine.

A month earlier, the Manhattan District Attorney stopped prosecuting most low-level marijuana cases.

And in January 2019, Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed legalizing recreational marijuana statewide.

Data show that most arrests for marijuana crimes occur in predominantly minority neighborhoods despite studies that show people of all races use the drug with equal frequency.