White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki acknowledged via Twitter on Friday that five staffers “are no longer employed” at the White House “as a result” of the Biden Administration’s employment policies related to cannabis. The tweet came a day after the Daily Best reported dozens of White House staffers had been suspended, moved to remote work assignments, or asked to resign over their cannabis use.
“We announced a few weeks ago that the White House had worked with the security service to update the policies to ensure that past marijuana use wouldn’t automatically disqualify staff from serving in the White House,” Psaki tweeted on Friday.
“As a result, more people will serve who would not have in the past with the same level of recent drug use. The bottom line is this: of the hundreds of people hired, only five people who had started working at the White House are no longer employed as a result of this policy.” – Psaki via Twitter
According to a New York Times report, some of the affected staffers also had other disqualifying factors that surfaced when the White House was determining their eligibility for jobs in the administration, an unnamed White House official said.
The updated policies alluded to by Psaki were released amid guidance from the United States Office of Personnel Management. The agency’s Acting Director Kathleen McGettigan wrote in the rules that, “It would be inconsistent with suitability regulations to implement a policy of finding an individual unfit or unsuitable for federal service solely on the basis of recent of marijuana use.”
“Past marijuana use, including recently discontinued marijuana use, should be viewed differently from ongoing marijuana use,” she wrote, according to the Times.
Psaki did not clarify how many other staffers had been punished for cannabis use.
As a result, more people will serve who would not have in the past with the same level of recent drug use. The bottom line is this: of the hundreds of people hired, only five people who had started working at the White House are no longer employed as a result of this policy.
— Jen Psaki (@PressSec) March 19, 2021
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