NYC Issues Final Rule Making Exceptions to Ban on Pre-Hire Marijuana Tests; Home Care Meets Exception Criteria  

Situation Report | July 13, 2020

On June 16, 2020, the New York City (NYC) Commission on Human Rights published a final rule that lists the job categories which are exceptions to the current ban on testing job candidates for marijuana or tetrahydrocannabinols (THC) as a condition of employment in NYC.    

The final rule, which becomes effective on July 24, 2020, is here.

Under the rule, positions are exempted from the pre-employment testing ban if the duties regularly require — or require within one week of employment — a range of activities related to operating heavy machinery, aircraft support roles, working near utility lines or on construction sites, and other work. Exceptions also apply if impairment “would interfere with the employee’s ability to take adequate care in the carrying out of his or her job duties and would pose an immediate risk of death or serious physical harm to the employee or to other people.” 

According to the law firm Hodgson Russ, this new NYC law does not prohibit employers from drug testing current employees. Further, this new law does not constrain NYC employers from using workplace policies and discipline, up to and including discharge, to keep their workplaces drug-free.