What is a Pre-Employment Drug Screen Going to Be Like Post-Legalization?

The year 2018 is a big one for employment law. With legalization of cannabis on the horizon, Canadian employers are scrambling to come up with ways to cope with how the change could impact their business from a human resources perspective.

One of the pointed question will be, what is a pre-employment drug screen going to be like when cannabis is legal?

If Canada is anything like the United States, it could mean a decline in these kinds of screenings.

What is a pre-employment drug screen?

A pre-employment drug screen is a voluntary drug test administered to potential hires as a condition for employment. Pre-employment drug screens are more common in the United States than in Canada, since Canadian law offers broader privacy protection for workers. However, there are some industries in which drug screens are normal in Canada, such as international trucking.

According to Bloomberg, companies in states that have legalized recreational or medicinal cannabis are increasingly dropping the requirement for potential employees to pass a pre-employment drug screen. One survey found that the share of companies in Colorado testing for marijuana fell by 11% in the year after legalization.

Why? A tightening job market, combined with the drug’s legal status, means businesses can no longer afford to count out workers who use.

Employment in Colorado hovers around 4 percent, making it difficult for employers to hire. Drug testing only further restricts the job pool, and in this market, it could really hold back growth and productivity. And with society growing more and more accepting of cannabis use (American approval of cannabis legalization is at an all-time high of 64%, according to a Gallup poll last October) , it simply isn’t worth the expense.

So what is the future of pre-employment drug screens in Canada? Since the tests are already restricted in this country, the legalization of cannabis may not move the needle as much as it has in the United States. Companies that conduct tests often do so based on proven safety concerns. The drug’s legal status may not be enough to convince them to stop screening for marijuana on pre-employment drug tests.

Pre-employment drug screening is a complex issue in Canada, and you’d be wise to consult an expert like DriverCheck before moving forward with plans to implement it in your workplace. Check out Drivercheck for standard drug test employment information.

Health and Safety For The Workplace, The Ocean, and Diving

Do you feel safe on the job? As Canadians, one of our most basic rights as workers is the ability to perform our duties in a workplace that is a safe and healthy space. The vast majority of employees realize and respect that need, but unfortunately some don’t. Because of this, each province has rules in place that require companies to adhere to certain minimum safety standards.

This is good, but it is also important that these standards are uniform and adhered to equally. It is not enough for your boss to say, “OK, we cleaned out the basement and mopped the floors, so you’re good to go!” Basic maintenance is important, but the tasks performed need to specifically address potential hazards related to the work that organization does. Mopping the floor may prevent someone from slipping on some mud, but it won’t stop them from being crushed by improperly stacked pallets.

Each company with more than 20 workers needs to have at least two employees participating in a health and safety committee. One of these volunteers represents the workers, while the other serves as a representative for the company management. These individuals receive training designed to help them perform these duties. PSHSA offers health and safety certification for this purpose; WHMIS training is also highly valuable when it comes to making a workplace safe and secure for everyone there.

The benefits of a safe workplace are obvious. The workers can go about their duties efficiently in a safe environment where they feel comfortable working. That allows the company to meet its goals and satisfy any and all investors. It also helps to guarantee that the products or services will be on par with what is promised.

Is your workplace not up to standard in regards to its safety practices? It is important to speak out and make your concerns known. The life that is saved might be your own.