Drug Law

Medical Marijuana Patient Fired for Testing Positive for Pot

| by Marijuana Policy Project

By F. Aaron Smith

California has had legal medical marijuana for over 13 years, and more than 80% of Americans support patient’s rights to use it. But none of that mattered to Christian Hughes’ employer, who fired him for testing positive for marijuana that he uses under his doctor’s recommendation to treat injuries related to an auto accident.

Hughes, 33, was the on-site manager for a senior apartment complex in Anderson, California until his recent termination by MCA Housing Partners.

The resident senior citizens are up in arms over the unfair firing of their beloved manager. Norene Faidley, 68, told the Redding Record Searchlight that “Christian is our brother, our son, our grandson, and we love him.”

“He cares about us and our concerns,” she added. “No problem is too large or small, whether repairing an earring or eyeglasses to handling the unexpected illness or death of a resident.”

Some residents have even organized a petition and have gathered about 60 signatures from the 80-unit apartment complex in order to try to have Hughes reinstated.

Unfortunately, California law does not explicitly protect patients from sanctions in the workplace even when they are using marijuana in accordance with state law. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed legislation that would have changed that in 2008.

You can read Christian Hughes’ whole story and view a video about the reaction, here.