CBD In the Workplace
Cannabidiol, or "CBD", is legal throughout the whole of the US, but some users may worry about using CBD in the workplace. After all, CBD comes from cannabis, which is illegal or stigmatized in many areas.
So: Can an employer fire you for using CBD oil, or is your CBD wellness regimen safe for work?
Short answer: CBD should be appropriate for work, as it is legal, non-intoxicating, and unlikely to show up on standard workplace drug tests. However, certain employers may take issue with CBD if they're aware you're using it, and you should be certain to select a CBD product with minimal THC levels.
In this article, we'll dive deep into all things CBD in the workplace — from drug-free workplaces to at-will employment states to CBD product selection and more!
Can An Employer Fire You For Using CBD Oil?
As touched-on above, you almost certainly won't be fired for using CBD. The reasons are fairly straightforward:
- CBD is legal throughout the entirety of the US.
- CBD is non-intoxicating, and its effects are subtle, so it's extremely unlikely that anyone would notice you are under its effects.
- CBD doesn't show up on standard workplace drug tests.
- CBD may offer productivity-boosting benefits that could make you a more valuable employee.
However, it's important to understand your company's policies and the basics of your state's employment laws. Regardless of its legality, some employers may take issue with CBD in the workplace, and many states allow employers to terminate employees for virtually any reason.
Know Your State Law: At-Will Employment States
Depending on your jurisdiction, your employer may be able to fire you for virtually any reason. These "at-will employment states" mean that workplace CBD users should be extra careful to adhere to company policies.
If you're in an at-will state and your employer has an irrational dislike of all things cannabis, then they could fire employees for using CBD products, even though they are entirely non-intoxicating.
The safest thing to do might be to discuss your CBD use with your employer. In that discussion, be sure to:
- Explain that CBD is legal and non-intoxicating.
- Request explicit clarification on the company's CBD policy.
- Explain CBD's potential workplace benefits and request the company's opinion on CBD use at work.
Of course, if you already know that your company is vehemently opposed to CBD, that conversation could do more harm than good. There is no need to "out" yourself if you know it will land you in hot water. In those situations, you're better off taking other precautions.
CBD Doesn't Appear on Workplace Drug Tests (but Look Out for THC!)
CBD users rejoice! Even if you're regularly subject to workplace drug tests, you needn't worry about getting flagged for your CBD use.
Drug tests don't magically identify every substance in your body; they have to be looking for a specific substance. And CBD simply isn't a substance that's tested for.
However, the same can't be said for THC, CBD's infamous (and intoxicating) cousin. And even though legal CBD products are non-intoxicating, some do contain trace amounts of THC.
These traces are extremely unlikely to trigger a positive THC test result. Still, if you're using a very potent CBD oil or take CBD products in extremely high volumes, it's theoretically possible that your CBD products could result in a positive drug test.
If you're worried about that possibility, it all comes down to product selection.
Choose the Right CBD Product: Full Spectrum vs. THC Free CBD
Again, many CBD products contain small amounts of THC. These "Full Spectrum" CBD products are many users' default picks — but if you want to be extra careful, they may not be the best pick for you.
If you're worried about workplace drug tests, then selecting a "THC Free" CBD product may be the right choice.
THC free CBD comes in two basic forms:
- Broad spectrum CBD products are virtually identical to full spectrum ones, but with absolutely all traces of THC carefully removed. If you want to avoid all THC, but you're a fan of the entourage effect (which many users believe is the key to CBD's full potential), then broad spectrum is the right pick for you.
- CBD isolate products are made with CBD and nothing else from the cannabis plant. These products won't offer the entourage effect, but many users find that they're just as effective for managing their symptoms.
Choosing a THC-free product is the easiest way to get some peace of mind and never have to worry about a workplace drug test again.
Final Thoughts and Other Considerations
CBD is legal, doesn't show up on drug tests, and the vast majority of workplaces shouldn't mind employees' CBD use. Moreover, it may actually make for less stressed and more productive employees!
But does that mean that everyone should be using CBD at work? We're generally fans of the idea, but there may be some key exceptions.
- If you're regularly operating heavy machinery, be absolutely sure of how a given CBD product affects you before using it during work. Some products may cause mild drowsiness, and certain users may experience slightly reduced reaction times, which could make such work hazardous.
- Everyone reacts slightly differently to CBD, and some users may experience mild side effects such as dry mouth or stomach upset. No matter your line of work, feeling less than 100% at work is never fun, so be sure to listen to your body's needs!
Outside of these, we're big fans of CBD in the workplace, and many here in the office take CBD throughout the day!
But depending on where you are in the country, it may be best to run your CBD habit by your employer. Communication is king, and an early conversation may just save you a real headache down the line.