In a Related Issue: Medical Marijuana
Another hot topic is the use of medical marijuana. It has been approved in fourteen states as of this writing (Alaska, California, Colorado, DC, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington), and more are certain to approve it in the not-too-distant future. The general assumption is that people who are qualified to use marijuana for medical reasons are protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act, but states are writing specific guidelines.
HR managers are discovering that President Obama's apparent stance against medical marijuana operations has no teeth. HR 1983, the State's Medical Marijuana Protection Act of 2011, introduced in May 2011 by Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), promises to protect its use under state jurisdiction. This bill also proposes rescheduling marijuana from a Schedule I drug to a Schedule III drug, which means it is handled as a drug with less potential for abuse. This is another topic that we'll revisit later this year.