Legal Marijuana: Considerations for Families When Employing a Nanny

Apr 28, 2023 | Employing a Nanny

The first recreational marijuana dispensary in the Capital Region recently opened for business. While the use of marijuana for recreational purposes for individuals over the age of 21 has been legal in New York since April of 2021, many families that either have a nanny or are looking to hire one may have greater concerns now that retail shops are opening close to home.

While it is legal for individuals to use marijuana in New York, it is still illegal to use it in public places or while driving. As an employer, you have the right to specify your policies regarding drug use by your nanny. This may include a prohibition on marijuana use while on the job or on your premises.

It’s also worth noting that employers in New York are prohibited from discriminating against employees or job applicants based on their legal use of marijuana. As such, it’s important to treat your nanny fairly and to respect their privacy and personal choices.

As an employer, you may have concerns about how your nanny’s use of marijuana could impact their ability to care for your children. In addition to legal considerations, it’s important to carefully consider your own expectations and requirements for your nanny. This may include factors such as their experience and qualifications, their availability and schedule, and their ability to provide safe and effective care for your children.

Creating a Drug Policy for Your Nanny

Remember that just because recreational use of marijuana is legal in New York, you do not have to permit it in your home, which is why it’s a good idea to have a drug policy in place. A drug policy can help clarify your expectations and set boundaries around drug use by your nanny while they are on the job.

When creating a drug policy, it’s important to be clear and specific about what is and is not allowed. This may include a prohibition on marijuana use while on the job or on your premises, as well as a requirement that your nanny disclose any prescription or over-the-counter drugs they are taking that could affect their ability to provide safe and effective care.

It’s also important to establish consequences for violating the drug policy. This could range from a warning or probationary period to termination of employment, depending on the severity of the violation and your own personal policies.

When communicating your drug policy to your nanny, it’s important to do so in a clear and non-judgmental way. Emphasize that the policy is in place to ensure the safety and well-being of your children, and that you expect your nanny to respect your rules and boundaries.

Having a drug policy in place can help protect both you and your nanny, and ensure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to drug use while on the job. By being clear about your expectations and policies, and respecting your nanny’s privacy and personal choices, you can create a positive and productive working relationship that benefits everyone involved.

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