Timmins business community looking into workplace policies on marijuana
Lydia Chubak, CTV Northern Ontario
Published Wednesday, August 16, 2017 3:47PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, August 17, 2017 11:28AM EDT
With the legalization of marijuana looming, company officials and business leaders in Timmins realize they need to re-think their workplace policies.
"I think it's in everybody's best interest that whether it's just the employee or the employer, everyone needs to be on the same page, so no one's safety is compromised from one day to the next," said Kevin Vincent, Northern Industrial Services Group.
The Timmins Chamber of Commerce held a workshop on Wednesday to discuss marijuana in the workplace.
Local lawyer Carly Stringer told the local business community that anyone thinking of firing an employee for having residual marijuana in their system might not have a case.
"Employers should also be looking to couple that with things like performance indicators; peer monitoring; different non-invasive mechanisms of gauging impairment an of an employee's ability to perform their work," Stringer said.
Stringer suggested asking employees about their diagnosis could be crossing the line and that's why she recommends getting educated on the topic sooner than later.
"There's still a lot of grey and I think that was part of her presentation that there is some grey and certainly if faced with a situation I think something wise to do would be to search out an expert in that field," said Chief John Gauthier, Timmins Police Service.
Those in attendance were also told it may go against the human rights code not to accommodate an employee's medical marijuana, but she said an employer also has the right to ask for the appropriate information to make the right decisions; even if it means requesting an independent medical assessments.