Drug Law

ACLU Sues Wal-Mart: Fired Medical Marijuana Patient with Brain Tumor

| by Marijuana Policy Project

The American Civil Liberties Union today filed a lawsuit against Wal-Mart on behalf of Joseph Casias, the 30-year-old former Associate of the Year who was wrongfully fired by a Battle Creek, Michigan Wal-Mart for his legal use of medical marijuana.

Casias, who is married with two children, suffers from sinus cancer and an inoperable brain tumor, for which he is a registered medical marijuana patient under state law. But in March, Wal-Mart, in violation of Michigan’s medical marijuana law, fired him anyway after he tested positive for marijuana on a routine drug screen—even for a time denying Casias unemployment benefits. Soon after, MPP called for a national boycott of the corporation.

Today’s announcement by the ACLU brings new hope for justice for Casias, who remains unemployed since his firing. Even more importantly, it represents an opportunity to protect the rights of medical marijuana patients in states across the country who continue to face discrimination for taking the medicine that works best for them. From the ACLU:

Joseph is exactly the kind of patient Michigan voters had in mind when they passed the [Michigan Medical Marihuana Act]. Today, we’re asking the court to not allow Wal-Mart to punish Joseph for merely taking refuge from his pain, and using marijuana as allowed by state law. Corporations should never be allowed to force patients to choose between their health care and their job.