Employees of the federally operated U.S. Forest Service were warned by a notice from the agency’s human resources department on Monday (Aug 22nd) that, despite states slowly legalizing various forms of marijuana consumption, U.S. Forest Service workers are still subject to administrative action if they test positive for THC.
As Marijuana Moment reported, the U.S. Forest Service explains that “There have been no changes to the panel of drugs contained in the list of Schedule I drugs under the Controlled Substances Act,” meaning federal employees are not exempt based on the laws governing their states of residence.
The agency’s current policy is to randomly drug test workers who are suspected of marijuana use, and some “test-designated positions” are subject to regular testing regardless of the employee’s behaviors.
While the U.S. Forest Service didn’t explicitly prohibit CBD products in the notice they released to their workers, they did admonish workers against using non-FDA-regulated CBD products, as these (namely, full-spectrum CBD extracts) still have the potential to flag a drug test for THC.
There does appear to be a movement within Washington to better accommodate federal workers who live in states where marijuana use is prohibited, as the House Appropriations Committee has advocated for policy reform in the past that would incorporate state-level legality into the testing (and most likely, disciplinary) standards.
On a broader level, the American Federation of Government Employees, a massive union of more than 700,000 workers, is working on a resolution to remove “responsible off-duty marijuana usage” from the suitability criteria for federal workers.
For now, both marijuana and most CBD products, on-duty or off-duty, are to be avoided by U.S. Forest Service Workers and other federal employees.