June 22, 2021
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Marijuana News

The Job Corps Cannabis Quandary

Do we remember friends after high school that went into the Job Corps? I do. Folks that went into the Job Corps were trying to navigate their best options in life. Most of the people I knew that went into it had challenges in school and life in general. The Job Corps was a chance to change their life’s direction.

Representative Frederica Wilson of Florida understands this. Re. Wilson chairs the Higher Education and Workforce Subcommittee. Wilson is focusing on punitive measures that prevent people from entering Job Corps and other programs designed to assist people to improve their life opportunities.  

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Specifically, Wilson is focusing on eliminating the “‘zero tolerance’ language enacted during the Clinton administration, which requires automatic dismissal of young people for alcohol abuse, minor drug offenses and other infractions”, according to Ben Adlin of the marijuana Moment. Congress is preparing legislation to reauthorize the Job Corps. This is excellent news for many unskilled young people.

Wilson is urging Congress to eliminate drug screening as a requirement for entering the program. According to the Marijuana Moment each year thousands of young adults are prevented from entering the program due to failed drug screenings. These disqualifications are overwhelming for cannabis use.

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Wilson points out, “Blanket drug testing, with follow up tests being required even before the chemicals may have fully left a student’s body, have led to roughly 12,500 expulsions, 91 percent of which were for marijuana use”… “Today, recreational marijuana use is either legal or has been decriminalized in nearly half of our states”. Young adults may be barred from participating in a program for something legal in their state. 

The committee Rep. Wilson chairs will meet two more times to discuss reauthorizing the Workplace Innovation and Opportunity Act which comprises Job Corps and other workforce preparatory programs the Marijuana Moment reports. Many young adults in this country need to develop skills after high school and are not going to college. Why prevent them from opportunities because they have smoked marijuana recently?

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