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Amazon, the second-largest private employer in the U.S. behind Walmart, announced Tuesday it supports the federal legalization of marijuana. As consequence, the company is revising a controversial workplace policy and becomes an attractive employer. Amazon will no longer include the substance in the company’s pre-employment drug tests and that the drug will now be treated the same as alcohol. Positions subject to regulation by the US Department of Transportation will still include the marijuana test, Dave Clark, CEO of Amazon’s worldwide consumer division, said in a blog post. Amazon is also taking a closer look at its so-called Time off Task policy, which automatically tracks workers’ productivity by analyzing the time they spend on breaks.
“Starting today, we’re now averaging Time off Task over a longer period to ensure that there’s more signal and less noise—reinforcing the original intent of the program, and focusing Time off Task conversations on how we can help. The goal is to re-focus the conversations on instances where there are likely true operational issues to resolve,” Clark added. “In the past, like many employers, we’ve disqualified people from working at Amazon if they tested positive for marijuana use,” he said. In March, a New York man sued Amazon, saying the company rescinded his job offer at an Amazon warehouse because he tested positive for marijuana, even though the city banned employers from testing job applicants for cannabis in 2020.