Cannabis in the Workplace
When workers are impaired on the job, whether by fatigue, use of drugs, or consumption of alcohol, it can have serious consequences.
As an employer, there are a number of things to be aware of when it comes to addressing impairment in the workplace.
- Understand what your obligations are to make sure that all workers have the ability to do their job safely, and what your duty is to accommodate someone with a disability (i.e. therapeutic or substance dependence). See resources below for more information.
- Ensure that you have an impairment policy in place that addresses all forms of impairment – drugs, alcohol and fatigue – and make sure to seek out advice on your policy from human resources and legal professionals.
- Make sure that supervisors are trained to recognize the possible signs of impairment and are aware of procedures that may relate to workplace impairment, such as disciplinary and accommodation processes. See WorkSafe’s Impairment in the Workplace Toolbox Talk for more information.
- Communicate to your employees what impairment is, what your company’s policy is, and the legal consequences and safety risk of being impaired at work.
Preparing for the Legalization of Cannabis
WorkSafe Saskatchewan, in partnership with Miller Thomson, MNP and the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce, has developed a video resource for employers to answer a number of questions surrounding the legalization of cannabis. This moderated panel discussion draws on the expertise of human resources and legal professionals.
From the Canadian Human Rights Commission:
- What is the Duty to Accommodate?
- Impaired at Work: A Guide to Accommodating Substance Dependence
- A Template for Developing a Workplace Accommodation Policy
From the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission:
From the Occupational and Environmental Medical Association of Canada
From the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS):
CCOHS has published a white paper highlighting the implications associated with the use of cannabis (marijuana) for therapeutic and recreational purposes. It includes information for employers and workers, as well as for others interested in workplace health and safety.
Topics covered include how to:
- Address the potential for impairment as part of a hazard assessment
- Establish a concise policy and program on the use of any substance that can cause impairment
- Determine the actions the workplace can take regarding impairment
- Implement accommodation practices where necessary, including therapeutic needs and substance dependence
- Create a supportive, healthy and safe workplace
To download a copy of this white paper, visit the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety website.