OT - Medical Marijuana and Machinery Safety
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    Default OT - Medical Marijuana and Machinery Safety

    This may not be the right forum and I hope it doesn't degrade into a political discussion but I think it will have an impact on manufacturing, machining, and the use of machinery in general.

    The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has legalized the use of medical marijuana and just awarded 20 licenses for dispensaries. Therefore, for some people, the use of marijuana is now legal. While some of these people would be way too sick to work and some may be on permanent disability there may be others who are in the work force. I wonder what position that puts employers in re. the safe operation of machinery. Traditionally it has been deemed undesirable for people under the influence of either drugs or alcohol to operate machinery. Many employers require drug screening tests before hiring and sometimes periodically while employed.

    I am not sure that Massachusetts and other states that have legalized it have fully dealt with these issues in advance. I fear that trying to enforce workplace safety could now become a civil rights violation. I would be especially interested in how this issue is dealt with in other states that have previously gone ahead with legalization.

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    The whole thing is a joke -if your smokin get out of the shop !

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    I have not had time to research it fully yet but one of our local newspapers had an article on the medical use issue. They claim that the component in Marijuana that is used for medical purposes is not taken into the body by smoking. That chemical has been available in capsule form for many years legally and it does not have any of the other side effects of smoking. If this is true then where the heck do these states come up with smoking as medicinal? Perhaps wishful thinking on behalf of state representatives who will suddenly develop new medical issues that require its use? Will this improve or negatively effect government bureaucracy?

    Will you get sued if you decide not to hire or fire an employee who gets a medical use prescription? Does Obamacare cover this...? Does a supplier get a licence and who is responsible for collecting taxes? To many issues to cover in just one writing, but in no way can I see anything good come from this at all.

    Charles

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    Good luck keeping it non-political. Even the president has been asked about this issue lately.

    If its legitimately prescribed and not abused I see not reason to treat it different than any other prescription drug. It's well known that operating machinery, heavy equipment, motor vehicles, etc is dangerous when under the influence of narcotics, opiates, tranquilizers, etc. Being prescribed antibiotics and doing the same? No problem.

    The debate really comes down to how much the user is impaired.

    Myself, I gotta agree with reedepritice.

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    This is a serious issue. Years ago (in Massachusetts, btw) my dad worked at a large union shop. One of the welders went out at lunchtime and got wasted. He came back in and started welding again. But he forgot to put on his helmet. In a few minutes he was blind. Workers comp found in his favor, gave him disability, and held the company liable. And this was decades ago.

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    It's stupid to worry about this. Before weed was legal, people could just easily show up at work high.

    Why aren't you worrying about people showing ups or work on LEGAL prescription drugs that are far worse then weed? Do you have any idea how many people are popping pain pills and going to work? It's a huge problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Welden View Post
    It's stupid to worry about this. Before weed was legal, people could just easily show up at work high.

    Why aren't you worrying about people showing ups or work on LEGAL prescription drugs that are far worse then weed? Do you have any idea how many people are popping pain pills and going to work? It's a huge problem.
    Yup.

    Treat it like showing up to work drunk- it's legal to buy and consume, but you aint working here buzzed.

    Unless you're a pipe fitter, then by all means show up stoned. Just sit by the welder, he's drunk.


    Quote Originally Posted by wheels17 View Post
    This is a serious issue. Years ago (in Massachusetts, btw) my dad worked at a large union shop. One of the welders went out at lunchtime and got wasted. He came back in and started welding again. But he forgot to put on his helmet. In a few minutes he was blind. Workers comp found in his favor, gave him disability, and held the company liable. And this was decades ago.
    Good anecdote, but I find it hard to believe that person was able to keep an arc lit but be so drunk to not feel the searing pain in his retinas.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Welden View Post
    It's stupid to worry about this. Before weed was legal, people could just easily show up at work high.

    Why aren't you worrying about people showing ups or work on LEGAL prescription drugs that are far worse then weed? Do you have any idea how many people are popping pain pills and going to work? It's a huge problem.
    Ahhh... but now some idiot will try going court for unlawful termination when he carries a card that he got by paying a sleazy doctor in a traveling bus* $150 for a 15 minute consultation that resulted in a diagnosis of chronic pain that requires multiple daily toke sessions.

    The icing on the cake...? He'll probably win.

    *no joke, the buses showed up in Montana around 2004-2006

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    Quote Originally Posted by wheels17 View Post
    This is a serious issue. Years ago (in Massachusetts, btw) my dad worked at a large union shop. One of the welders went out at lunchtime and got wasted. He came back in and started welding again. But he forgot to put on his helmet. In a few minutes he was blind. Workers comp found in his favor, gave him disability, and held the company liable. And this was decades ago.

    Sorry, but without supporting documentation, I gotta call BS on this tale.


    Rex

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    At least in Washington state and Colorado an employer is allowed to make the judgement to allow or disallow use or influence while at work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bjorn toulouse View Post
    Sorry, but without supporting documentation, I gotta call BS on this tale.


    Rex
    It is BS. He would go blind faster from masturbation than from 5mns of weld.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CBlair View Post
    I have not had time to research it fully yet but one of our local newspapers had an article on the medical use issue. They claim that the component in Marijuana that is used for medical purposes is not taken into the body by smoking. That chemical has been available in capsule form for many years legally and it does not have any of the other side effects of smoking. If this is true then where the heck do these states come up with smoking as medicinal? Perhaps wishful thinking on behalf of state representatives who will suddenly develop new medical issues that require its use? Will this improve or negatively effect government bureaucracy?
    The drug is Marinol, and has some but not all compounds gotten by ingesting MJ. I have my personal suspicions that buying Marinol from Abbott Products is considerably more expensive than buying heavily taxed MJ or edibles from a dispensary in a state where doing so is legal.

    I think its ridiculous to discriminate for prior drug use (considering THC will cause you to fail a drug test up to 45 days after ingestion, and long after the buzz is gone, whereas far more dangerous drugs will be gone from a persons system in 48 hours) for a person who shows up to work sober and stays sober throughout the workday.

    Similarly, I had a cocktail last night but I showed up to work this morning dead sober. It's one thing if I show up to work hungover regularly. If I'm a good worker what business is it of my boss if I had a rum and coke long after I had clocked out for the day?

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    This is a topic I have wanted to bring up on this forum.
    Thanks Scott, Now how will piss testing positive be handled?One can show positive for up to 30 days after using.

    Are one of you going to fire an employee for testing positive?

    Funny is.. I was out drinking with a larger shop owner insurance issues came up this subject (years ago) his reply was I would have to fire most of my employees including myself .
    just like alcohol DONT BRING IT TO WORK at the end of the day It is their life not the company writing their paycheck for the "9 to 5"

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Welden View Post
    Why aren't you worrying about people showing ups or work on LEGAL prescription drugs that are far worse then weed? Do you have any idea how many people are popping pain pills and going to work? It's a huge problem.
    Or worse, why isn't he worrying about people buying alcohol ? It's available on every other street corner and have proven to be one of the worst crutches in American history. Maybe I'm bias, having worked in a family owned liquor store for almost 15 years of my life and having to see people waiting at the front door at 6:00am in the morning with their hands shaking so bad they couldn't count the money in their own hands...I was always puzzled by how I was taught in high school that alcohol was not an "addicting" drug, that it was only habit forming...(for WTF that even means ).

    And I will add, that plenty of our customers were machinists, building cars at a GM plan in Los Angeles...the same folks that would buy a 1/2 pint or a pint of whiskey on their lunch break, which in turn left "extra" bolts in their overall pockets from the cars they had been working on...coincidence?

    Cheers,
    Alan

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    Quote Originally Posted by bukwerm View Post
    Ahhh... but now some idiot will try going court for unlawful termination when he carries a card that he got by paying a sleazy doctor in a traveling bus* $150 for a 15 minute consultation that resulted in a diagnosis of chronic pain that requires multiple daily toke sessions.

    The icing on the cake...? He'll probably win.

    *no joke, the buses showed up in Montana around 2004-2006
    A lot of people can act like something is wrong to get a medical marijuana card, but it's good that legit patients can get it if they want it. Cancer patients and others should be able to have any god damn thing they want that makes them feel better. I have been a cancer patient and weed did help me in some ways. It wasn't like a miracle thing, but it did help. I'm glad it was available to me. Weed is pretty harmless and it did alleviate some of my suffering and I suffered like a son of a bitch. Terrible horrible shit.

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    Under the influence is under the influence, prescription or not.
    There isn't a free pass to drive or work when impaired, just because you have a prescription.
    Prime example prohibition didn't stop people from getting drunk.

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    It's my understanding that people who don't NEED medical dope will get these "prescription" anyway. Where MJ is OKed for med use that has happened. Some DRs. aren't particular what they prescribe to their patients and the "symptoms" required for qualification are quite loose. Some individuals I'm acquainted with are biting at the chomp to have medical MJ "legalized" in this state so they can sell the crap.
    I'm not particularly against legalizing it but do think it is a mistake. What is next? Crack or heroin. The more put to sleep the better to control the public. For our own good, I suppose.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Welden View Post
    A lot of people can act like something is wrong to get a medical marijuana card, but it's good that legit patients can get it if they want it. Cancer patients and others should be able to have any god damn thing they want that makes them feel better. I have been a cancer patient and weed did help me in some ways. It wasn't like a miracle thing, but it did help. I'm glad it was available to me. Weed is pretty harmless and it did alleviate some of my suffering and I suffered like a son of a bitch. Terrible horrible shit.
    I agree. The card isn't/wasn't the issue as I saw it. The problem was a few money hungry doctors who abused the system and allowed a facade of legitimacy to the recreational illicit drug users. Just like any other prescription, there's cases where the drugs can/should be applied.

    I believe the big challenge is how to determine if a person under the influence of any particular substance is a danger in the workplace, and at what point does that danger subside.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Welden View Post
    A lot of people can act like something is wrong to get a medical marijuana card, but it's good that legit patients can get it if they want it. Cancer patients and others should be able to have any god damn thing they want that makes them feel better. I have been a cancer patient and weed did help me in some ways. It wasn't like a miracle thing, but it did help. I'm glad it was available to me. Weed is pretty harmless and it did alleviate some of my suffering and I suffered like a son of a bitch. Terrible horrible shit.
    I'm sorry you had to go thru that John.
    I'm glad the treatments worked and you can participate.

    I too hold the view that MJ is no worse than alcohol, but I also wish there were an effective test for it's immediate effects.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 72bwhite View Post
    Under the influence is under the influence, prescription or not.
    There isn't a free pass to drive or work when impaired, just because you have a prescription.
    Prime example prohibition didn't stop people from getting drunk.
    That's how it is over here too, and rightly so.

    Thought? - mainly 'cos I don't know your rules. ;- Would someone sick enough / in enough pain to warrant Marijuana, be able to / allowed to work?

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