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Cannabis Issue Page

State Laws | Workplace Safety | Cannabidiol and Cannabis in Commerce

Cannabis in the Chemical Distribution Industry

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As cannabis and hemp-derived products become more popular, employers face increasing questions about their safety, legality, and impacts on safety-sensitive industries, including chemical distribution. ACD supports the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in its efforts to study the long-term impacts of cannabis and hemp use and encourages the agency to establish a regulatory framework for its safe and legal distribution. ACD also supports the rights of companies to set and enforce substance use policies consistent with the safety-sensitive nature of the industry. Finally, ACD supports the inclusion of a liability exemption for safety-sensitive employers from any workplace hazards that may occur due to an employee’s impairment from the use of marijuana.

For more information on specific cannabis policies, please explore the topics below and browse ACD’s resource database. For the latest actions in these areas, follow us on X and visit our Media Center.

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State Laws

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As states have legalized the recreational and/or medicinal use of cannabis or are on their way toward legalization, many employers of individuals in safety-sensitive jobs are concerned that the ramifications of hasty legalization could result in decreased workplace safety. While most state laws protect employers’ rights to prohibit on-site cannabis use, they do not adequately protect employers from the consequences of use during personal off-hours time or give employers the tools they need to properly set up and enforce a substance use policy consistent with safety-sensitive job functions. Cannabis’ impairment effects have had limited studies due to marijuana remaining a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act. However, trace amounts of THC can be found in the body for several weeks after just one use.

While ACD does not oppose states making their own determinations over the legality and regulation of cannabis, any laws allowing its use should include protections for companies to set up and enforce substance use policies for safety-sensitive employees, including the option to test candidates as a condition of employment.

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Workplace Safety

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Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, is impairing and can impact an employee’s ability to perform their job function safely. As several states have legalized recreational and medicinal use of cannabis, many employers with safety-sensitive job functions are concerned that hasty legalization could result in decreased workplace safety and increased liability for companies. ACD supports the inclusion of a liability exemption for safety-sensitive employers from any workplace hazards that may occur due to an employee’s impairment from the use of marijuana. ACD also supports the rights of companies to set and enforce substance use policies consistent with the safety-sensitive nature of the industry.

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Cannabidiol and Cannabis in Commerce

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The passage of the 2018 Farm Bill legalized the production and sale of hemp and related products, but this has further complicated the regulatory landscape of cannabidiol (CBD), a product derived from cannabis. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved the sale and distribution of CBD under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act, and states that “that it is a prohibited act to introduce or deliver for introduction into interstate commerce any food (including any animal food or feed) to which THC or CBD has been added.” Further, nearly all states have some form of regulated cannabis or cannabidiol use.

ACD supports FDA in its efforts to study the long-term impacts of cannabis and CBD use and encourages the agency to establish a regulatory framework for its safe and legal distribution. Additionally, ACD supports Congressional clarification for the FDA to streamline research and implement a science-based and safe framework for bringing hemp-derived CBD dietary supplement or food additive products to market.

For further questions about ACD’s Cannabis Issue Page, please contact Nicholas Breslin, Manager of Regulatory Affairs at nbreslin@acd-chem.com.