What Cannabis Legalization Means for Canadian Employers

By Admin  |  

2.2 min read

For over 90 years, cannabis has been prohibited for consumption, sale and possession in Canada. This will all change on October 17th because of the Senate’s vote to pass Bill C-45 and legalize cannabis.  One of the driving factors behind this decision was the development of a new industry in Canada that can create thousands of jobs and contribute billions of dollars to the Canadian economy. Additionally, regulating this industry through authorized retailers and a controlled distribution network can make it safer to consume cannabis. While there are certainly many benefits to legalizing cannabis, employers must be weary of the risks associated with cannabis use in the workplace. This is uncharted territory and creating an effective policy should be a leading priority for employers.

Workplace Challenges and Risks

According to a survey conducted by over 650 Human Resource Professionals Association members, the top concerns related to cannabis’ impact on the workplace are: absenteeism, decreased work performance, and Occupational Health & Safety risks

[i]. These risks can have significant impacts on a company’s bottom line, especially in safety-sensitive organizations where employees operate vehicles or heavy machinery and have the capacity to do harm. To curb this challenge, employers are considering regular drug-testing to reduce the risk of impairment. While this may deter employees from using cannabis on the job, it is not a sustainable solution to the problem. Random drug-testing policies are rarely permitted and require a high legal bar to protect workers’ rights[ii]. Additionally, unlike alcohol, the chemical components of cannabis can stay in the bloodstream for days or even weeks after consumption and does not necessarily indicate impairment[iii]. Evidently, the legalization of cannabis has presented several challenges and few solutions. Employers must dig deeper to find a sustainable solution to this problem.

Natural Behaviours of a Safe Worker

Often the best way to mitigate risk in the workplace is to ensure that you have the right people. If the right people are in the right roles and they are engaged in their work, it is less likely that you will experience absenteeism and low work productivity. The Predictive Index Assessment Suite™ can be used to help find a natural job fit for candidates. Additionally, The Predictive Index has completed extensive research to identify the natural behaviours of a safe worker. These can be identified with The Predictive Index Behavioural Assessment™. To learn more about how behavioural analytics can mitigate workplace risks of cannabis legalization, contact us.

[i] https://www.hrpa.ca/Documents/Public/HRPA-Clearing-The-Haze.pdf

[ii] https://globalnews.ca/news/4284727/legal-weed-canadian-workplaces-concerned/

[iii] https://www.canadianlawyermag.com/article/marijuana-and-the-canadian-workplace-3378/

Related Blogs

  • Pre-Employment Testing

Mastering Pre-Employment Testing to Find the Perfect Fit

Hiring the right talent is critical to the success of any organization. A single mis-hire can result in significant costs, including wasted time, lost productivity, and the expense of rehiring and retraining. Pre-employment testing has

Leading Gen Z: Navigating Tomorrow’s Workplace

Introduction: The workforce landscape is swiftly evolving, and at the forefront of this change is Generation Z. Born into a world of technical advancements, Gen Z brings with them a fresh perspective and a set