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Worker health and wellness | Drugs

New task force to examine workplace drug use

March 19, 2014

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Pensacola, FL – The American Association of Occupational Health Nurses and the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine will be working together on a task force to study the safety and health issues associated with marijuana and other drug use among workers.

In a March 10 announcement of the partnership, AAOHN and ACOEM noted that 20 states and Washington, D.C., have legalized medical marijuana, and two states allow recreational use of the drug. The task force will examine research and develop evidence-based education and recommendations to help environmental, health and safety professionals establish workplace drug policies.

“Marijuana is being viewed as a relatively harmless substance, but this may be a misconception by those who may be unaware of workplace safety issues that can arise when workers are under the influence of marijuana or other drugs,” ACOEM President Ron Loeppke said in a press release. “To compound the issue, there is a dearth of scientific studies to support the nature of current marijuana products and their effect on workers.”