Gary Ross had a doctor’s prescription to marijuana for his chronic back pain, pursuant to the Marijuana Compassionate Use Act of 1996.
In 2001, Ragingwire Telecommunications offered Ross a job as a lead systems administrator as long as he passed a drug test.
Ross failed the drug test when it showed positive results for THC, the active chemical in marijuana. Subsequently, Ragingwire terminated Ross’ employment based on the results of the drug test.
Ross sued Ragingwire for disability discrimination, on the grounds that marijuana use is a reasonable accommodation for back pain, as well as for wrongful termination in violation of public policy and breach of implied contract that required terminated based on good cause.
On September 7, 2005, the Court of Appeals held that an employer need not accommodate a disability by allowing an employee to use a drug that is illegal under federal if not state law. It also held that there was good cause to terminate Ross’ employment.
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