Judge Supports Wal-Mart Firing of Employee Over Medical Marijuana
A federal judge in Michigan has ruled that Wal-Mart was within its rights to fire an employee for using medical marijuana to treat an inoperable brain tumor, The Wall Street Journal’s law blog reported Feb. 11.
Judge Robert Jonker ruled that although state law “protected licensed users from arrest,” according to The Wall Street Journal, employers still had the right to fire employees for drug use.
The employee, 30-year-old Joseph Casias, said that he did not use marijuana on the job. He was represented by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which said it would appeal Jonker’s ruling. “A choice between adequate pain relief and gainful employment is an untenable one,” the organization said in a statement.
Wal-Mart policy requires employees injured on the job to undergo a drug test, Reuters reported Feb. 11. Casias was tested after he hurt his knee at work. He began working at the Wal-Mart in Battle Creek, Mich. in 2004 and had been named Associate of the Year.