Amazon Backs Federal Cannabis Legislation and Adjusts Its Drug Testing Policy for Workers

Amazon is endorsing federal legislation to legalize marijuana and has pledged not to test some of its employees for the substance.

Amazon’s consumer boss, Dave Clark, said in a blog post on Tuesday that the business supports the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, which was reintroduced in the House late last month. The MORE Act would decriminalize cannabis on a federal level, cleanse criminal records, and invest in communities affected by the drug.

Clark added, “We hope that more businesses will join us, and that lawmakers will act quickly to pass this law.”

Amazon has announced that it would change its corporate drug testing policy for some of its employees. According to Clark, marijuana will no longer be included in the company’s drug testing policy for any positions not controlled by the Department of Transportation.

“In the past, we’ve rejected people from working at Amazon if they tested positive for marijuana usage, just like many other employers,” Clark said. “However, given the direction state laws are go in the United States, we’ve reversed course.”


Image courtesy of @davehclark

Amazon is also revamping its approach for measuring worker productivity, known as “time off task,” according to Clark.

Amazon keeps track of warehouse workers’ productivity by tracking the number of parcels they pick, pack, and stow each hour. If employees take too long off from scanning parcels, Amazon’s internal systems will register it as a time off task and issue a warning, which might lead to termination.

The measurement system was created to uncover problems with employees’ tools, and it was only “secondarily” successful.