Toker Fired After Legally Smoking Pot Has His Job Back

Agency says the incident with Michael Boyer was just a misunderstanding

By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 11, 2014 6:23 AM CDT

(Newser) – Some parts of the story are still in dispute, but all parties seem to agree on one fact: Michael Boyer, the first man in Spokane, Wash., to legally purchase recreational marijuana on Tuesday, has his job back. According to NBC News, TrueBlue Labor Ready, Boyer's former (and once-again present) employer, says it reinstated the 30-year-old yesterday to his part-time security guard position. A spokeswoman for the temp agency said that the firing was a mistake because TrueBlue management thought he was toking on the job. "He was scheduled to work," she tells NBC News, but had apparently taken the day off. "We saw him on TV that he was under the influence, and that caused us to start a process of screening. When we realized that he was not on assignment, we reinstated him. Pot is legal, and we know that."

Some parts of the story remain … hazy. For example, earlier news reports said he was fired for failing a TrueBlue drug test. Boyer clarifies in the Seattle Times that he didn’t take a drug test for TrueBlue (and was fired after declining)—but he did take one for a second employer, Kodiak Security Services, and he says Kodiak fired him as well. An HR manager for Kodiak denies Boyer's claim, saying he wasn’t terminated and that he was never asked to take a drug test. "I wish he would stop [his claims]," she tells the Times. Boyer notes to the Times that the companies are likely afraid of a lawsuit—but then reveals to NBC News that the Kodiak incident was over regulations related to getting a guard card, not legal pot sales. He’s OK either way: "It worked out."

Mike Boyer turns to the crowd outside, showing off the 4 grams of marijuana he bought as the first in line to legally purchase marijuana at Spokane Green Leaf, July 8, 2014, in Spokane, Wash.
Mike Boyer turns to the crowd outside, showing off the 4 grams of marijuana he bought as the first in line to legally purchase marijuana at Spokane Green Leaf, July 8, 2014, in Spokane, Wash.   (AP Photo/The Spokesman-Review, Dan Pelle)
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