Vote NO On Proposal 18-1

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A vote on whether to legalize recreational marijuana will be part of the November 6 statewide ballot, identified as Proposal 18-1, and the Northern Michigan Chamber Alliance is joining groups around the state to oppose the measure.

“Given marijuana’s status at the federal level, and legal liability on both ends for business owners, the Chamber Alliance feels Proposal 18-1 is not right for Michigan at this time,” said Kent Wood, Director of Government Relations for the Chamber Alliance.

{Read Our Issue Brief – Recreational Marijuana}

“Each of the nine chambers took at look at this measure and got feedback from their members. The feedback has been overwhelming in concern about the impacts on business owners in the region. What kind of liability does this open up for employers who are required by law to provide “zero tolerance” workplaces, and how will they test for compliance? Until those concerns are addressed, the Chamber Alliance is opposed to efforts to legalize recreational marijuana,” said Wood.

Highlighting the region’s concerns are:

  • Lack of clarity at the federal level. Marijuana is still illegal under federal law, and it is unclear how the federal government will handle this direct conflict of federal law in certain areas such as states/organizations receiving federal funding, banks dealing with finances, and other businesses providing services for businesses or individuals involved in this trade.
  • No Impairment test. There is no on-demand impairment test for marijuana at this time, requiring employers to rely on blood and urine tests, neither of which can reliably provide information about present impairment. This causes a significant human resource dilemma, especially in skilled trade and heavy industry sectors.
  • Liability On Both Ends. Employers have a responsibility to protect all employees. Under the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, employers are required to provide their employees with a place of employment that “is free from recognizable hazards that are causing or likely to cause death or serious harm to employees.” Failure to do so opens employers to liability and lawsuits. Yet, there is no way to regulate marijuana in the workplace outside of current drug testing protocols.
  • Protection for employers. There are a host of unanswered questions surrounding drug-free work place policies and employer rights. This means that courts will have the final say in how these work place policies and rights will be treated under the proposed legalization law. Uncertainty of this kind is not in the business community’s best interest.

Because the above issues critical to business have not been addressed in the ballot language, the Chamber Alliance opposes the measure to legalize and regulate marijuana on the November 2018 ballot.

SEE The Official Ballot Language

Learn More: Healthy and Productive Michigan



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