Is CBD oil in the workplace even allowed? This new widely hyped elixir has been in the news for some time now, and several herbal medicine and therapists claim this to be one of the best pain relievers on the market. Surprisingly, this new medicinal oil has made its way to the makeup and even stress-relief capsules and other cannabis-based goods in the marketplace. While external CBD oil usage may not get you high, internal consumption may result in a positive drug and alcohol test and cause you problems at work. Here is a brief overview of CBD oil in the workplace and its dos and don’ts.
What is CBD, and How does it work?
CBD or Cannabidiol is a compound derived from the Cannabis (Marijuana) plant. CBD is also known as medical marijuana in the marketplace. Most CBD manufacturers describe this plant-based compound as an antidepressant, anti-anxiety, analgesic, and anti-inflammatory oil that can be used externally or internally. The CBD oil is directly derived from the hemp plant, not the marijuana plant. Based on the strength of CBD in hemp oil, its effects may vary.
CBD Oil in the Workplace – Dos, and Don’ts
Cannabidiol or CBD has been on the market for a few years now. Based on the 2018 federal legislation about hemp, it is not an illegal controlled substance. However, ingestion of CBD or CBD-based substances in your workplace can be risky. That’s because one of the active compounds in CBD may flag you as positive in the workplace drug and alcohol test. That means CBD usage may jeopardize your job if your test results show a large amount of unregulated substance known as THC.
Employers are now grappling with internal CBD oil usage in the workplace while also dealing with the rising legalization of such compounds for medicinal and therapeutic purposes. Since CBD is an approved drug for recreational and medical purposes in states across the country, it is not clear how employers should deal with its workplace usage knowing the possibility of a positive test with THC ingestion.
CBD Oil Concerns:
A 2017 study on CBD oils claimed that about 30 percent of CBD samples (oils, liquids, and tinctures) from untrustworthy sources were not the purest concentration of CBD. Furthermore, several of them had more percentage of the THC, although the product labels mentioned differently. Due to the excessive amount of THC, such falsely advertised therapeutic grade CBD could lead to impairment, intoxication, and even a positive drug test if ingested. There are also reports of CBD-based oils potentially containing other contaminants, including heavy metals, at a very unsafe level.
What Should Employees Do?
- Always use therapeutic grade CBD oil from a trustworthy source.
- External usage of CBD products is considered very safe and will not show THC in your system. However, it is advised to consult your physicians before consuming CBD-based products.
- Always communicate with your manager/supervisor about your CBD usage and therapeutic needs.
- Do not buy CBD-based products from third-party sellers on an online platform. Most of these products may contain contaminants and possibly THC.
- If you use CBD oil internally for therapeutic purposes, do not hesitate to communicate with your manager.
Should Employers Allow?
While some reports pose significant concerns for employers in permitting CBD or CBD-based products in the workplace, there is no evidence that an external usage of these products will flag a positive drug test with THC. However, employees must not use CBD oil and products from untrustworthy sources because there is no guarantee about the safety, efficacy, and content of the active compounds in these products. Employers may also consider educating employees about these concerns, and the legal and safety implications of positive test results for THC. Employees who want to use CBD for a therapeutic or medicinal purpose must communicate with their employers clearly. Based on their medical needs, employees may need to work with their managers to develop a plan to avoid any possible legal and safety consequences at the workplace.
Learn more about CBD oil in the workplace. Click below to watch our On-Demand webinar ABCs of CBD and listen to what our expert panel has to share.
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