Amazon has said it will ease its marijuana policy for employees further and is preparing to support national legislation to legalize the drug. Citing its June 2021 decision, the US e-commerce giant said it had “reinstated employment eligibility” for former employees and applicants made redundant or deferred during random or pre-employment marijuana screens. He said the selection of cannabis job applicants makes it difficult for the company to expand its workforce. Amazon has said it wants to help reform US cannabis policy because it wants to “become the best employer on Earth.”
Amazon Senior Vice President of Human Resources Beth Galetti said in a blog post that the company was making these changes for three reasons and described them.
Citing the first reason, Galetti said a growing number of US states are moving towards “some level of cannabis legalization.” Second, the available data indicated that pre-employment marijuana testing had a disproportionate impact on people of color. And third, Amazon was still “looking to hire” new employees and eliminate pre-employment testing for cannabis, and in the process, allowing the company to expand the pool of applicants.
“The status quo today is unfair and untenable,” Galetti added, noting the difficulty for companies to create rules on cannabis given the gap between national law and local laws. “We look forward to working with Congress and other supporters to secure the necessary reform of national cannabis laws.”
Out of a total of 50 U.S. states, 19 have so far legalized the recreational use of marijuana. Connecticut was the last state to do so in June of this year. That same month, Amazon announced that it would be dropping candidates from testing for certain job profiles for the drug. The only candidates she decided to shortlist were those applying for positions regulated by the Department of Transportation, such as truck drivers and heavy equipment operators. He then began to actively support the 2021 law on reinvestment and removal of opportunities for marijuana (MORE Act).
Aiming to “become the best employer on earth”, Galetti wrote that “we know that our local communities and future generations need us to be better every day” to achieve this feat.