Impairment, Marijuana and the Workplace

Workplace impairment - marijuana legalizationWorkplace impairment, whether by fatigue, use of drugs (over the counter, prescription, illicit, marijuana) or consumption of alcohol, can have serious consequences.

The key steps to reducing the impact of impairment on the workplace are to have appropriate mechanisms in place, to provide clear guidance to all workplace parties and to apply workplace policies and programs using a fair and consistent approach.

Legalization of Recreational Cannabis (Marijuana)

The legalization of recreational cannabis (marijuana) on October 17, 2018 requires Ontario employers to prepare for a new regulatory landscape.

Under the legislation, which makes amendments to the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, the use of recreational cannabis in workplaces is banned. Similar to tobacco, employers are required to take active steps to enforce the ban. As such, many organizations are moving to include cannabis use and its implications in their existing health and safety policies and programs.

Please note that use of cannabis for medical purposes has been legal in Canada since 1999. While human rights laws require accommodation of employees with medical needs or substance dependence, there is also the general duty requirement for employers to ensure a safe workplace. It is important to understand the distinction between accommodating the employee and accommodating the disability. The goal is to balance the rights of the employee with those of the employer.

How WSPS can help

WSPS supports the prevention of injury and illness as they relate to workplace impairment from cannabis use. Please contact customercare@WSPS.ca for more information on how we can help. Some of the ways we can assist, whether in-person or online, include:

  • Creation or revision of policies and programs - As with any legislative change, WSPS can assist with the establishment or revision of policies and programs so that they meet federal and provincial occupational health and safety requirements.
  • Guidance on how to address the potential risk for impairment - We can provide customers with guidance on how to address the potential risk for impairment as part of a hazard/risk assessment.
  • Referrals to reputable third-party providers - We can refer you to reputable third-party providers for services and resources that go beyond our mandate (please refer to the list below).

Please note that a unique set of hazards places workers involved in the production, processing and/or distribution of cannabis at risk. For information and assistance, inquire about WSPS' consulting services at customercare@wsps.ca.

WSPS Consulting Solutions

We deploy best-in-class knowledge, experience and quality management standards. Our experts assist you with the development and implementation of leading practices. For impairment in the workplace, we can assist in creating or revising policies and programs and provide guidance on addressing the potential risk for impairment as part of a hazard/risk assessment.

Legislation

For more information

 

Downloads

Job Aid - Cannabis and Impairment in the Workplace

Job Aid - Cannabis and Impairment in the Workplace

Use our Job Aid to help navigate the new cannabis legislation in the workplace.

131 KB PDF

Training

Impairment in the Workplace: What Managers Need to Know (1/2 day)

Impairment in the Workplace: What Managers Need to Know (1/2 day)

NEW! Impairment in the Workplace: What Managers need to Know is a ½ day training session which focuses on providing information and recommendations to managers on how to address the potential of impairment in the workplace as part of a hazard assessment as it relates to workplace health and safety.  This session is open to all sectors and organizations including employers, managers and supervisors.

12 scheduled date(s)
  • Classroom
  • On-site
$149.00

E-Courses

Impairment and Cannabis in the Workplace (English) (1.5 hour)

Impairment and Cannabis in the Workplace (English) (1.5 hour)

Employers have an obligation to make sure that all workers have the ability to do their jobs safely. Being impaired at work - whether caused by alcohol, drugs, or another source - can affect our ability to focus, make decisions, follow instructions, and handle equipment and tools.
View Details 
$49.00

L'affaiblissement des facultés et le cannabis au travail (français) (1.5 heure)

L'affaiblissement des facultés et le cannabis au travail (français) (1.5 heure)

Les employeurs ont l'obligation de veiller à ce que tous les travailleurs aient la capacité de remplir leurs fonctions en toute sécurité. Avoir les facultés affaiblies au travail, que ce soit à cause de l'alcool, de drogues ou d’une autre raison, peut nuire à la capacité de se concentrer, de prendre des décisions, de respecter des consignes et de manipuler de l'équipement et des outils.
View Details 
$49.00

Articles

Managing the impact of marijuana in the workplace

Managing the impact of marijuana in the workplace

Recreational marijuana is now legal. For many employers still struggling with how to accommodate employees who have been prescribed cannabis for medicinal purposes, this will create new challenges and questions. How do you define impairment and fitness for work? What types of tasks are safety sensitive? These are key concerns that leadership needs to manage before the legislation passes.

Oct 18, 2018
4 things employers need to know about marijuana

4 things employers need to know about marijuana

Make no mistake: recreational use of marijuana comes with significant risks for your workplace. This was the thrust of a recent presentation by Dr. Bruce Demers, Medical Director and Chief Medical Review Officer, CannAmm Occupational Testing Services. "It increases the risk of accidents and injuries, period," he said.

Oct 18, 2018
Recreational marijuana: Take these 4 steps to prepare your workplace

Recreational marijuana: Take these 4 steps to prepare your workplace

Impairment continues to be a challenge that employers across Ontario must manage. With the marijuana legislation that took effect on October 17th, employers are once again reminded of the importance of managing impairment in the workplace.

Oct 18, 2018