Erin McLaughlin, shareholder in the firm's Labor and Employment section, comments on the increase of positive test results for marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamines in employee drug testing as the legalization of marijuana use allows for recreational use of pot. In The Washington Post's article, "Why Drug Testing at Work 'Is the New Don't Ask, Don't Tell,'" Erin comments:
What I see employers doing is evaluating the positions, asking ‘is this really a safety-sensitive position?’ " said Erin McLaughlin, a labor and employment lawyer with Buchanan, Ingersoll & Rooney based in Pittsburgh. "If it’s not, then there are more employers who are taking the position ‘let’s not test for marijuana.’ "
She believes the tight labor market is also clearly playing a role. “Absolutely, I think in positions where there is a labor shortage right now and employers are looking for candidates for jobs that don’t have safety-sensitive issues or aren’t federally regulated [to require testing], I definitely think employers are eliminating drug testing as a whole when it comes to hiring applicants,” she said.
She pointed to the construction industry, where there are big labor shortages, and said she’d seen it with some retail clients. “Quite frankly, for jobs like a cashier, a sales associate -- many of them don’t do drug testing at all, especially considering the labor shortage.”