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Study: Marijuana Decreases Employee Absenteeism

Medical Marijuana Work

A new study published in the Health Economics journal found that “respondents were 8% less likely to report being absent from work due to health issues” in states with medical marijuana laws. This is substantial evidence contradictory to the myth that marijuana makes people lazy.

Based upon personal curiosity, Darin F. Ullman chose to conduct this study and research the actual effects that medical marijuana laws have had on employees missing work, according to The Washington Post. Using information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Current Population Survey, Ullman began to compile data and compare factors. He found information from 24 medical marijuana states, and his results show that there was an 8% decrease in employees calling in sick in states with medical marijuana laws.

Further research from the Current Population Survey reveals that states with more lenient medical marijuana programs had more than an 8% decrease in sick day requests. On average, the states with more medical marijuana qualifying conditions, saw 13% fewer call-offs to work. Those in the 30 to 39 age group called off 15% less.

Cannabis Work

Ullman said, regarding medical marijuana use, “Individuals experience relief from disabling symptoms, absence from work could decline.”

Other studies have shown that in states where medical marijuana is legal, alcohol use has declined, and that heavy drinking is a leading cause of missed days at work.

Ullman concluded his thoughts by saying, “The results of this paper therefore suggest that [medical marijuana laws] would decrease costs for employers as it has reduced self-reported absence from work due to illness/medical issues.”