Cannabis and the Workplace: Training Requirements

Why Provide Training on Cannabis and the Workplace?

Employers are legally obligated to keep workers safe from workplace hazards, including hazards resulting from impairment. To do this, employers need to provide training to address hazards associated with impairment as a result of cannabis use.

What Should Training Include?

Generally speaking, cannabis and the workplace training should cover:

  • The dangers of being impaired on the job
  • Recognition that impairment from cannabis can make it harder to work safely
  • What a workplace substance management policy should include
  • The difference between medicinal and recreational cannabis
  • Legal rights that medical cannabis users have
  • Advice for employees who wish to discuss recreational or medicinal cannabis with employers
  • A definition and explanation of safety-sensitive roles

Our Cannabis and the Workplace Awareness Training covers all of these issues in a 45-minute online course.

Supervisors and Managers Require Additional Training

Their training should cover all of the basics above, plus:

  • How to identify signs of impairment
  • An explanation of the employer’s duty to protect as it applies to cannabis in the workplace
  • How to enforce the workplace substance management policy
  • Disciplinary measures in place for policy violations
  • How to make accommodations for medicinal cannabis users
  • Handling substance abuse and addiction
  • What to do when there is reasonable suspicion that an individual is impaired

Specific Training for Commercial Drivers

There is no grey area for commercial drivers; commercial drivers are subject to zero-tolerance sanctions under the Criminal Code if they’re found to be impaired while operating a vehicle that requires a class A, B, C, D, E, or F license. This needs to be made clear through training for all commercial drivers.

Specific Training for Safety Sensitive Roles

Employers in workplaces that employ workers in safety sensitive roles must provide training aimed at ensuring that all workers understand the specific hazards that result from impairment. If there is a waiting period between when a worker has used cannabis and when they’re considered to be fit for duty, that must be explicit in the policy and in the training.

Key Takeaways

  • Employers have a general duty to keep workers safe from workplace hazards, including hazards resulting from impairment
  • Employers must provide instruction, training, and information on workplace hazards from impairment, including impairment from cannabis use
  • Supervisors, managers, commercial drivers , and employees in safety sensitive roles have additional training requirements

OSG Can Help

Provide Training

Get instant access to our online Cannabis and the Workplace Awareness Training, or contact us for custom training options.

Buy Cannabis Training Online

Book on-site customized training that is specific to your workplace substance management policy.

Update your Policy

Every employer should have updated their employee policies to address recreational cannabis. Our Workplace Substance Management Policy template makes it easy to update your policy. Simply download our template, add your organization’s specifics to the existing template, and your policy will be ready to go.

Stay up to Date on the Latest Recommendations on Cannabis and the Workplace

Coming soon:

  • Safety Sensitive Roles
  • Drug Testing
  • Understanding the Need to Update Employee Policies
  • Duty to Accommodate Medicinal Marijuana
  • How Legalization Affects Employee Benefits and Drug Plans
  • The Future of Cannabis Legislation in Canada

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