Philadelphia PA to Prohibit Pre-Employment Drug Testing for Marijuana

Drug Testing

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

On April 22, 2021, the City Council of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, approved legislation – Bill No. 200625 – that would make it illegal for employers in the city “to require a prospective employee to submit to testing for the presence of marijuana” before hiring them for a job, according to a report from The Philadelphia Inquirer.

However, the bill exempts jobs from the drug testing ban, such as law enforcement, employees who need a commercial driver’s license, healthcare workers, and “any position in which the employee could significantly impact the health or safety of other employees or members of the public,” The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

In addition, the bill does not prohibit employers of unionized workforces from testing for marijuana if agreed to in their collective bargaining contracts. The City Council voted 15 to 1 to approve the bill and, if signed into law by Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, it would take effect on January 1, 2022, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

The rate of urine drug testing positivity in the U.S. workforce increased to a sixteen-year high in 2019, climbing to 4.5 percent, the highest level since 2003, according to an analysis by Quest Diagnostics. Marijuana positivity in the U.S. workforce increased nearly 11 percent in urine testing from 2018 to 2019 and 29 percent since 2015.

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a leading global background check provider that was ranked the #1 screening firm by HRO Today in 2020 – provides legally compliant Pre and Post Employment Drug Testing with access to more than 10,000 collection facilities. To learn more about ESR, visit www.esrcheck.com.

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