Workshop for employers will address medical-marijuana use by employees

October 25, 2005

Michael Rose, Salem Statesman Journal

A free workshop for employers will look at the problems surrounding medical marijuana use by employees.

An employment lawyer, a personnel director and a substance-abuse expert will speak at the Nov. 15 workshop.

The workshop will be held from 9 to 11:30 a.m at the Phoenix Inn in Albany.

"The possibility of having to accommodate employees with medical marijuana cards creates a direct conflict with an employer's drug-free workplace policy," said Jerry Gjesvold, the employer services manager for Eugene-based Serenity Lane Treatment Center. He is among the speakers at the workshop.

Other panelists for the workshop include:

Paula Barran, an employment lawyer, who will address the legal issues of medical marijuana and substance-abuse policies.

Rick Howell, the human-resources director for Columbia Forest Products, who will talk about the company's experience with medical marijuana in the workplace.

The panel is sponsored by the Oregon Department of Human Services.

Employers can register for the session by calling Susanne Isom at (541) 758-2642 or e-mailing her at

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