Whether you have been using weed for years or are just now dipping your toe into the waters of legal marijuana, you should know that legalization doesn’t equate to a free pass. In Washington State, employers can have varying opinions on marijuana use, and getting drug tested can bring on a whole new meaning.
So what is a Washington resident supposed to do if they enjoy marijuana but also need to bring home a paycheck every other week? Depending on who you talk to, you’ll get a wide range of answers. In general, let’s review the basics of what you need to know when it comes to cannabis and drug testing.
First Things First
Before diving too deep into drug testing laws and employer outlooks on weed use, it’s important to know why cannabis is becoming such a big issue in the workplace. Unlike alcohol, an unarguably popular recreational substance, marijuana stays in your system long after use. If you have a beer the night before you’re about to get drug tested, it’s typically no big deal. Yet if you smoke a joint even weeks beforehand, you may find it poses a challenge.
Why such a huge discrepancy? Marijuana affects many major organs, including the brain, liver, and your heart. Because your body processes it much differently than other compounds, even a one-time smoke can stay in your system up to four days. People who use weed fairly often will have at least a 10 day waiting period before a urine test would show up drug free, and heavy users could have 30 days or more to wait before being able to pass a drug test.
In many cases, individuals who are on the job hunt don’t think about this element of their weed use, and poor planning can lead to the inability to pass a drug screening. When the prospect of waiting at least one month before obtaining employment is on the line, people often get frustrated and blame employers for not being more lenient. However there’s a good reason for standards to be as strict as they are, as we’re about to learn.
What’s The Law?
Washington residents as a whole are still getting used to the idea that marijuana is now legal to use for both medicinal and recreational purposes. With such a big change in legalization, it’s only natural that it will take some time for certain guidelines to become formally established. At this point in time, the law is a little gray when it comes to weed use.
Despite the fact that it’s legal, you can never use weed on the job, similarly to alcohol or any other substance that would be questionable in the workplace. But what happens if you want to smoke over the weekend and show up to work Monday morning? That’s where things get a bit hazy.
At this point in time, there is no hard and fast rule when it comes to testing positive for marijuana while on the job. If you are obviously high, your boss does have the right to exercise suspension or even termination from your job. When you haven’t smoked in days but test positive for weed, it’s up to the employer as far as how to handle the situation.
Some take the approach that what you do on your own time is fine, and as long as the only thing showing up on your test is legal weed, you’re good to go. Other hard drugs will probably lead to different types of conversations, but you get the idea.
Others have a strict no-tolerance policy and will instantly fire you if your drug screening shows positive results. Why are they so harsh? Ultimately, marijuana is still illegal on a federal basis, and certain employers in Washington want to maintain their reputation as individuals who follow every law to the letter. Furthermore, any type of on-the-job accident that can be attributed to weed use creates panic in the eyes of many employers.
Still some jobs will be somewhere in the middle of these two extremes, and may ask that you talk to their HR department before returning to work, or might ask you to take some vacation time until your test can come back negative. How your employer chooses to handle the situation is as unique as each company themselves.
When You’re On The Hunt
We’ve talked about what might happen if you test positive for weed when already employed, but what happens if you’re job hunting and you are asked to take a drug test? More and more staffing agencies in Washington are starting to enforce mandatory urine testing along with the submission of your application, and sadly this strict policy is causing more and more people to go without work.
Some estimates show that over 30% of people who apply to work with a temp agency are failing their drug test, a number that is significantly higher than it was in past years. Perhaps taking such a hard stance on marijuana is creating more problems in the job market than many anticipated.
Once you’ve taken a hit, whether it’s your first ever or you’ve now lost count, you need to start thinking about how it will affect your current or future employment. Many individuals often try to get around drug testing and utilize over the counter products that claim to rid your system of all traces of marijuana. Stories have been told for years about people smuggling fake urine into the test with them, although the success of this method isn’t very high.
Your best bet just might be to have a candid discussion with your employer and ask what their stance is on marijuana. You may end up surprised to find that they don’t care what you do on your own time, while others will make it very clear how they feel about any kind of weed use. Once you have that information, you can then determine what makes the most sense for you should you ever get randomly drug tested.
Still unsure about what to do? You can always visit the team at The Bakeréé, as our budtenders are well-versed in all things marijuana. If losing your job isn’t worth it, visit us to pick our brains about how you can still enjoy weed without the worry.
As modern as vaping seems it is not actually all that new. The roots of vaping are actually recorded to reaching as far back as the 5th century. Ancient models aside, even modern vaporizers have their specific roots with electronic advances during the last century. All trends need to start somewhere, but sometimes they do not really pick up until a time where an audience will really appreciate them.
Vaping: In the Beginning
The earliest recorded electronic cigarette patent appeared in the 1920’s, created by a Joseph Robinson. But while Mr. Robinson’s designs did not pick up and there would not be another push for electronic cigarettes until the 1960’s. In 1965 Herbert A. Gilbert published his patent and pushed for a less addictive, healthier alternative to smoking. Unfortunately the 20th century audience would be less than receptive to the need for an e-cigarettes benefits.
Ahead of the Times
The mid-20th century was home to a tobacco industry at full strength. Advertisements were everywhere, warnings were minimal, and people were not actively looking for any alternatives. Production of vaporizers was unnecessary when there was already an established market for cigarettes. Mr. Gilbert’s patent for e-cigarettes would expire before the idea fell back into obscurity.
Modern Return of Vaporizers
The e-cigarete would not re-emerge as a viable idea until the 21st century. A chinese medical researcher and pharmacist named Hon Lik would develop and create and release a new, modern e-cigarete by 2006. There would be plenty of refinement and changes before the modern trend started to pick up within the next two decades. Vaping subcultures were already growing by the early 2000’s and with the decline of smoking they would soon see an incredible boom in business.
Vapes’ Time in the Spotlight
The rise of vape culture was further pushed when two brothers named Umer and Tariq Sheikh living in the United Kingdom created the cartomizer. With the cartomizer, e-cigarettes would then be able to go on the market as single, disposable units. This change allowed vaping to spread even faster and by 2007 the e- cigarette would hit U.S shores. As vaporizers spread and grew in popularity, they would benefit from the attention and contributions of its user base.
2018 and Future Directions for Vaping
One of vapings best qualities is how customizable of an experience it can be. Vaporizers are incredibly modifiable and the user base has found ways to push and change their experiences in radically different ways. Size, shape, color, or even power settings are capable of being swapped to fit user preference. There are even sports and events centered around people vaping and mods. The history of the vape is still ongoing; a hobby that has taken the world by storm.
“Whatever happened to just good ol’ fashion weed?”
Well, it got better. Cannabis, especially with more and more states legalizing recreational use, has expanded beyond what many people grew up thinking it was. Cannabis oils, while not necessarily a totally new development, has increased in popularity over the years. If you’re not familiar, don’t worry. This guide will teach you everything you need to know about cannabis oil, how to use it, and where to start. But first things first, let’s go through some of the basics…
What is Cannabis Oil?
As the name implies, cannabis oil is substance extracted from cannabis plants. It’s 100% natural, no chemicals added. It’s sticky and gooey, much like sap you’d find in a tree. As a concentrated form of THC or CDB, cannabis oil is one of the most potent forms of marijuana. Because of this, they’re often used for medicinal purposes to alleviate pain especially in cancer treatments.
As science has gotten more advanced, so have cannabis oils. Whereas it used to be around 15% THC, you can now get numbers as high as 90%. Whether you’re using for medicinal or recreational reasons, cannabis oil has become a popular route for many. Not just for its potency, but for the wide array of uses and ways to use it. Not everyone wants to smoke flowers or roll a joint. For that, and many other reasons, cannabis oil can be a great alternative for people wanting to use cannabis without smoking. The methods vary, letting you choose which is best for you. Let’s take a look at few.
Essentially, topicals are anything you’d put on your skin that’s infused with cannabis oils. This could be a lotion, a balm, or just straight oil that you rub into your skin. What makes topicals so appealing is how they can directly address soreness and pain. Just simply rub the topical into wherever you’re aching and you’ll find fairly rapid and long-lasting relief. Using a topical typically won’t get you high, which can often be a benefit. Since they aren’t entering your bloodstream, you can take care of your pains with a topical and not have to worry about your sobriety. Think of topicals as a therapeutic rather than a psychogenic. They can also help reduce swelling and inflammation. Really, topicals are one of the most practical uses of cannabis that won’t interfere with your day-to-day.
Topicals are not, however, boring. Just like their are numerous strains of cannabis flowers, topicals come in all sorts of varieties and flavors. Want a blueberry kush balm? You can find that. It’s all just a matter of deciding what’s right for you.
You’ve likely seen a lot of different vape stores around town or in news headlines, but that type of vape is very different animal. Those are much more in line with e-cigarettes, giving an alternative to tobacco. They often contain nicotine, but not always. Cannabis vape cartridges do, however, function somewhat similarly.
Vape cartridges require the use of a vaporizer pen – a small, cylindrical device that looks like, well, a pen. It’s convenient enough to fit into your pocket, making it portable and functional. The pen itself is fairly useless without two things: a charge in an outlet and cartridge. Your pen will heat up the cartridge somewhere between 284 and 446 degrees Fahrenheit – any hotter than that and the oil would combust. This turns the oil into vapors and you’ll inhale through the end. Some vaporizers will let you choose what temperature you burn your oils, also determining how much of the cannabis you burn. More heat means more cannabis.
Vape cartridges are often odorless or flavored. You won’t stink up the house using a vape pen, which is one of its strongest selling points. Many consumers will often pick the pen over traditional cannabis just for that reason. It’s much easier to carry with you and have at the ready. For someone who has chronic pain, being able to carry a cannabis vape pen with them alleviates the stress of having to find a proper space to ingest cannabis. There’s a range in quality of pens as well. You can go for a basic model, which typically won’t give you much of a choice in terms of temperature, or you can go with something that truly helps you customize your experience. You can choose everything from size, color, and different settings.
Smoking, even cannabis, will have an effect on your lungs. Vaping cannabis oils doesn’t completely remove those risks, but by inhaling vapor instead of smoke you’re making things a lot easier for your respiratory system. Vaping also ensures that you’re getting pure cannabis and not other elements mixed in with the smoke, giving you a better and purer high. Not just that, but they can be more cost effective as well. There are a few upfront costs, especially if you’re committing to a high end vape pen, but you might find cartridges last you longer than flowers or pre-rolls, especially if you’re a frequent smoker. Cartridges will cost you more than the typical gram, but you won’t have to keep running back to the store or dispensary for more as often.
If you’ve heard anything about dabs before, it likely has to do with the intensity. It’s a newer method for ingesting cannabis, developed within the last decade, but it’s already taken notice from outlets as large as The New York Times. So, what’s the buzz all about?
Dabs are concentrates made from cannabis oils. It’s cannabis distilled to it’s highest percentage of THC, often between 80-90%. That means you’re going to have a much more intense experience than smoking or even vaping. For a simplified version of weed, dabbing can be surprisingly complex. It needs to be facilitated with a few tools, including: a water pipe, a torch, a dome, a glass nail that fits in your water pipe, and a metal dabber. When you’re dabbing, it’s best to veer toward being cautious. You don’t need much concentrate at all, average doses look like the size of pocket lint. A little goes a long way. You’re encouraged to sit as well – this can be a really intense experience.
Dabbing is one of the most efficient ways of consuming cannabis and it can be the best way for immediate pain relief. However, you should always exercise caution with dabbing. Dabbing will often heightened your heart rate even more than typical with cannabis and can exacerbate symptoms like paranoia and hallucinations. If you’re trying dabbing for the first time, do it with someone who’s familiar with the process.
Cannabis oils are emerging as some of the most fascinating and effective ways to enjoy and use cannabis today. Ready to try some for yourself? Come on down to The Bakeree and we’ll help you find the right method for you. In the meantime, check out our options on our menu.
Do you have a cannabis-related crimes on your record?
The Minority Cannabis Business Association and Marley Natural™ have teamed up to combat the negative consequences of the war on drugs. The mission of the Rise Up™ Expungement Program is to help men and women expunge (or “vacate”) certain types of cannabis-related crimes from their record. On May 20, we will assist a group of select individuals with vacating their Washington cannabis-related crimes. You may qualify if:
• Are over 18 years of age
• Have a valid (not expired) state-issued (any state) ID or valid U.S. passport (you cannot participate if you do not bring your valid ID with you)
• Were convicted of a cannabis crime in Washington State
On May 20, in 2 hours or less, we will help you complete all the steps necessary to file your request for expungement with the state of washington, including covering all costs and fees.
• Apply for the expungement day by completing the registration form. Space is limited, so register early.
• You will receive notification of confirmed registration within 3 business days
• The event will be held in Seattle, WA. Address to be communicated upon confirmed registration
• There are two time options – an 11am appointment start time and a 12:30pm appointment start time
• This is an estimated 2-hour time commitment. Expect to complete the process within 2 hours of your appointment start time
• Food and beverages will be provided
• Please provide a valid email address with your sign up. We will confirm your sign up via email
• NOTE: If you sign up, you are expected to show up. A no show means someone else who needed this service missed out because we saved a space for you
Complete the sign up form today to reserve your spot. Spots are limited, and will be assigned to qualified individuals. Sign up early before all spots are taken.