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White House confirms firing of 5 employees based on marijuana use

FILE PHOTO: The White House is seen at sunset in Washington, U.S. March 6, 2021. REUTERS/Erin Scott

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House said on Friday it has fired five employees over marijuana use, even after announcing a more lenient policy toward past use of the drug a few weeks ago.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki posted a tweet confirming the five removals after the Daily Beast reported that dozens of staffers had been suspended, asked to resign, or placed in a remote work program due to past marijuana 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.

"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," she added in a subsequent post.

(Reporting by Alexandra Alper; Editing by Leslie Adler)

© Copyright Thomson Reuters 2021

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