FBI to Consider Relaxing Employee Marijuana Use Policy

FBI to Consider Relaxing Employee Marijuana Use Policy


The United States Justice Department, along with the FBI, is considering revising their current hiring policy regarding marijuana use. The current policy calls for all potential hires to be 3 years removed from marijuana use. The current director of the FBI, JamesFBI Comey, believes the current policy is preventing some of the best qualified people from applying. In an address during the annual conference of the New York City Bar Association  Director Comey stated to attendees:

“I have to hire a great work force to compete with cyber-criminals and some of those kids want to smoke weed on the way to the interview.”


Director Comey’s comments are another example of the willingness to lower law enforcement standards to pander and appease certain groups.  For the record, I support the legalization of marijuana; not because I think people should smoke marijuana, but for many other pragmatic reasons. However, my opinion is that there is no place in law enforcement for current users of pot, just as there is no place in law enforcement for people who abuse alcohol. What kind of message are we sending if Director Comey believes it is okay to show up for a job interview with the FBI while one is currently under the influence of narcotics?

I agree that prior use of marijuana should not be the sole reason to disqualify a person from employment in law enforcement. Perhaps the 3 year rule should be amended to 1-2 years. I do not believe it is unreasonable to ask a potential law enforcement employee to be drug free for a year or two prior to employment.

In addition to the marijuana issue, I believe Director Comey’s position brings into question one’s character and common sense.  If one thinks it is ok to show up for a job interview stoned what does that say about the person’s character?

If we simply apply common sense(by the government)and self-control(by potential employees) then Director Comey can seek the most qualified parties for employment and past marijuana use will not preclude a future in law enforcement for young job seekers.


Joe Blaettler is the owner/operator of East Coast Private Investigations of New Jersey, LLC. ECPINJ is a full service private investigations and security consulting firm located in Morristown, NJ. ECPINJ is a private investigations firm serving all of New Jersey to include Morris County, Bergen County, Hudson County, Essex County, Middlesex County, Passaic County, and Sussex County. We specialize in surveillance, witness locate and statements, undercover work, background checks and all many other investigative needs of our clients.  In addition to being a private investigator, Joe is also an Adjunct Professor of Criminal Justice teaching numerous disciplines within the criminal justice field to include Leadership, Supervision, Ethics, and Contemporary issues in Law Enforcement. Joe also works with attorneys by providing expert opinions regarding Police Policy and Procedures.