West Virginia Drug Testing Laws and Regulations
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No West Virginia statute actually covers drug testing in private employment. Unlike many other states, West Virginia hasn’t passed laws to regulate or restrict an employer’s right to require drug tests. The state however does require public contractors on certain construction projects to do drug screening and in 1990, the Supreme Court prohibited private employers from doing random testing.
In the absence of a comprehensive West Virginia drug testing law, employers here who wish to implement their own drug-free workplace program can base their drug testing policies on federal drug testing laws, the West Virginia Alcohol and Drug-free Workplace Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act among others.
Chapter 21 - Article 1D of the West Virginia Labor Code, otherwise known as the West Virginia Alcohol and Drug-free Workplace Act mandates that public improvement contractors should implement a drug-free workplace program requiring alcohol and drug testing. No public authority may award a public improvement contract to a contractor unless they maintain a drug-free workplace policy in compliance with section 8 of this article. The contract must include the following provisions:
1. That a drug-free workplace program is implemented;
2. That the awarding public authority may cancel the contract if the contractor:
During the bidding stage for public improvement contracts, bidders can only qualify to bid if they have a written plan for a drug-free workplace policy.
Applicant testing is covered under Article 1D Section 5 of the West Virginia Labor Code West Virginia Alcohol and Drug-free Workplace Act, which states that a contractors shall conduct pre-employment drug tests for all employees.
Employee testing is likewise covered under Section 5 of the West Virginia Labor Code West Virginia Alcohol and Drug-free Workplace Act where it is stated that employees may be subject to the types of drug tests that include, but are not limited to, the following:
Section 5 further states that the drug-free workplace policy does not apply to workers who are already covered by the guidelines set forth by the Department of Transportation. These employees no longer require additional drug tests.
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|Medical Marijuana Law:||
There is no medical marijuana program in West Virginia.
The January 2013 and December 2013 West Virginia poll results indicated that a greater percentage of residents support changing law in the state to permit terminally and seriously ill patients to avail of medical marijuana. A greater percentage deemed that it is safer to use marijuana than alcohol.
In February 2016 Senate Bill 640 was introduced by Minority Leader Jeff Kessler and Majority Leader Mitch Carmichael. SB 640 created the Compassionate Use Act for Medical Cannabis. If approved, the bill would have provided legal protection for patients using medical cannabis. The bill was not passed when the senate session ended in March 2016.
If passed the bill would have the following:
Qualifying Medical Conditions
• Hepatitis C
• Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
• Crohn's disease
• Alzheimer's disease
• Parkinson's disease
• Addiction to amphetamines, opiates
• Severe or chronic pain.
• Severe nausea
• Persistent muscle spasm
• Doing task when under the influence of marijuana is deemed negligent, or grounds for professional malpractice.
• The use and possession of marijuana in a school bus, on the grounds of preschool or primary or secondary school, or correctional facility is illegal.
• Smoking marijuana in any public transportation or public space is illegal.
• It is illegal to operate any motorized vehicle, airplane or boat when under the influence of marijuana.
• It is illegal for a person without debilitating medical condition to use medical marijuana.
Recreational Marijuana Law
There is no recreational marijuana law in West Virginia. House Bill 114 was introduced on May 24, 2016. This bill would have permitted individuals 21 years old and above, the right to possess and grow a limited amount of cannabis if they have been issued a $500 tax stamp. First time offenders will be fined from $1,000 to $2,000. It also stipulated the removal of cannabis from the list of schedule 1 dugs. The bill died in chamber in June 2016.
Possession of marijuana is a misdemeanor with jail time of 90 to 180 days. Sale and distribution of marijuana is a felony with jail time of 1 to 5 years.
• First time offenders for the possession of less than 15 grams of cannabis are offered conditional discharge, which is not a legal conviction.
Effects on Workplace Drug Testing
There are no laws and regulations addressing drug testing for employees working in private companies. However, the State mandates public contractors working on particular projects to do drug testing for their employees. Random drug testing is permissible only if there is reasonable and objective belief that the particular employee is using drugs or if the employee's job concern public safety.
Material on these pages (state drug testing laws and drug testing regulations) is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, medical or technical advice. This drug testing related information is not intended as substitute for obtaining legal advice from attorney, or a relevant medical technical or financial professional. TestCountry is not a law firm or a legal agency, therefore cannot guarantee the accuracy of this content. Drug testing laws are collected from legal and/or state sources, and it may or may not be valid by the time you are viewing it. Any views or opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Confirm Biosciences Inc. DBA TestCountry.