Are Canadian Employers’ Views on Use of Medical Cannabis a Concern?

Article by Amanda Scriver, London Free Press

Are Canadian employers’ views on use of medical cannabis a concern? Some employers will have to consider setting restrictions on cannabis consumption for their employees AMANDA SCRIVER For employers, being constructive will likely involve keeping abreast of applicable legislative requirements. ESTHERPOON / ISTOCK / GETTY IMAGES PLUS

The Retail Council of Canada’s (RCC) cannabis forum last month provided those in attendance some food for thought: more than half of Canadian employers—52 percent as per a new report by the Conference Board of Canada—expressed concern about the implications of cannabis legalization in the workplace.

With many seemingly unclear about how cannabis legalization will affect workplace conditions, RCC responded to the confusion by hosting the first-ever Retail Secure 2018 in Toronto, which “focused on providing deeper clarity on the recent cannabis legislation in Canada.”

The forum’s main focus, RCC president and CEO Diane Brisebois told The GrowthOp, highlight employers’ perspectives toward cannabis legalization. “There’s a bit of anxiety because you want to make sure that you’re treating your employees fairly, and at the same time, anticipating some of the challenges that may occur. It’s unnerving,” Brisebois commented.

The unease was evident in comments made by speakers and participants alike, which ranged from highly informative to somewhat alarming, at the conference.

Company leaders and HR professionals are endeavouring to navigate ever-changing regulations, but it remains a tricky time for professionals across Canada. Right now as an association, “our job is to listen to our members, and to reach out as often as possible, to share these experiences with them,” Brisebois noted.

With cannabis legal across the country, companies are bound to come across new challenges: employees looking to claim medicinal cannabis coverage, workers who may have consumed during work or off-work hours and could have some level of impairment, and customers who enter a business or retail environment while high.

Read the full article here.

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