Yet state economists Mark McMullen and Josh Lehner are hearing from employers that many of those who don’t have jobs are unemployed for a reason.
“One labor issue that continues to crop up is drug testing. At least anecdotally, more firms are reporting trouble finding workers who can pass a drug test,” the economists write.
The economists aren’t sure what to make of the possibility a lot of Oregonians cannot produce clean urine.
“Given the tight labor market, and legal recreational marijuana up and down the Left Coast, these reports are a bit surprising,” they write. “It may be that the pool of available applicants has shifted; that individuals who can pass drug test already have a job. It may be for insurance‐related reasons that employers are ensuring they have a drug‐free workplace, even if it means monitoring their employees behavior on their own time. However it is possible that these anecdotal reports reflect a broader increase in drug usage that would be both an economic and societal problem.”