Article by Manisha Krishnan, Vice News
Eric Madore was relieved. The 28-year-old Collingwood, Ontario resident had finally landed a job that was manageable given his many health issues, including severe liver disease. But he’d only been working a day as a school bus driver when he said he was fired over his choice of medication.
Madore is a medical cannabis user—licensed under Health Canada. He suffers from an autoimmune disorder that has resulted in primary sclerosing cholangitis, a chronic liver disease for which he’s had two liver transplants. He has had his colon removed. Madore uses cannabis to help with pain and stomach issues as well as anxiety and depression.
“For my mental issues, it calms me down, it relaxes me,” Madore told VICE.
His prescription, which VICE has viewed, is for three grams of cannabis a day—though he said he normally uses less than that. A note from the Ministry of Transportation about Madore’s cannabis prescription provided to VICE says “his present physical and mental health will have no effects on his ability to operate a bus.”
Prior to his last liver transplant 10 months ago, Madore was working at a recycling plant that was hard on his joints. After the surgery, he was out of work and then went looking for a job that would be easier on his body. So he applied to be a school bus driver under Sinton Landmark Bus Lines. He said was upfront with the company about his medical cannabis use and stresses he would never medicate before a shift.