Cannabis, although it is now legal, is still not allowed in the workplace. Jackie Wall, Executive Director for the Estevan Chamber Of Commerce shares her thoughts and what businesses and the public need to know.
"I think there’s a lot of concern with our community and likely across this whole country, as far as now that marijuana is legal, exactly how and what kind of implications are going to result from that. In a recent poll, 26% of parents say they use marijuana. It’s already very prevalent and it’s already been used medically for quite a long time in our province. Yes, this is a new level, we are dealing with a new situation."
" I think the best thing that can happen is that we make sure the workplace is informed on what the expectations are and what the legal ramifications are. This is like any substance, you cannot show up to work under the influence of anything whether it be illegal or legal. Alcohol has been in our community for a long time and you know you don’t show up to work drunk, you also know you won’t be able to show up to work stoned. It is now legal. Businesses are going to have to approach this a little bit different because it is no longer illegal, so information is key and the chamber has been looking at providing that. Work Safe Saskatchewan has some very interesting information and that is a great partner that we’ve worked with earlier in the year to work on a session on cannabis legalization for our members."
"We have a session at The Business Summit as well, so that people have the opportunity to ask those questions that they are unclear on. The main thing we are saying to our businesses is to get educated, educate your workplace and make sure you have the policies and procedures in place to deal with any incidents that may arise."
"For a lot of businesses, those policies are basically in place. They have them in place for alcohol and illegal drugs, and now it’s incorporating the new marijuana legislation within those procedures and policies. It will be a little bit of an ambiguous time, it’s a learning curve for everyone. The best thing you can do is get educated and make sure you have gone through what the procedures would be if somebody comes into your workplace and you suspect they are impaired from any substance. A lot of those policies are already in place and a lot of companies have safety standards and part of that is a drug and alcohol procedure."
For more information on cannabis in the workplace, click Here.