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Constitutional Law Keyed to Barnett
Employment Division, Department of Human Resources of Oregon v. Smith
Citation:494 U.S. 872 (1990)
The State of Oregon prohibited the knowing or intentional possession of a controlled substance unless the substance had been prescribed by a medical practitioner. Under state law, the drug peyote was designated a Schedule I drug. Respondents Alfred Smith and Galen Black were fired from their jobs with a private drug rehabilitation organization because they used peyote for sacramental purposes at a service of the Native American Church. They were denied unemployment benefits from the Oregon Employment Division because they had been discharged for work-related “misconduct.”
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