Article by Cory Correia, CBC News
Workers in safety sensitive workplaces will likely see increased scrutiny of marijuana impairment by employers once the drug is eventually legalized by the federal government, says labour lawyer Julie Menton.
Legislation is set to be introduced by summer 2017.
But, a Calgary-based oil and gas safety group recently raised concerns over workplace safety risks associated with increased use of marijuana.
“I think what the concerns are is that [the] impairment at work that [employers are] already experiencing is going to grow, and that may be the case that they have more cases of people attending work impaired under the influence of marijuana than they had previously,” Menton told guest host Gloria Macarenko on CBC’s On the Coast.
Menton says the issue is broken down into two areas, safety sensitive workplaces, and the rest.
“Safety sensitive employers absolutely cannot tolerate any degree of impairment at work from alcohol or drugs and that’s a huge issue. They have a legal responsibility to ensure a safe workplace under workers compensation legislation,” says Menton. “But for employers who are not safety sensitive they’re concerned about performance issues and attendance issues, and people being impaired at work and not able to do their job or coming in late, missing a lot of work.”