Substance Abuse Testing

Canada is on-track to legalize recreational marijuana use on July 1st, 2018, but many of the details are still being worked out in each province. Every area it seems will have different rules about where you can buy pot and how old you will have to be. It also seems clear at this point that there will not be nearly enough product available to satisfy the anticipated demand.

One subject often left out of the conversation is the question of testing. Almost everyone agrees that people should not drive a car under the influence of marijuana, but what exactly qualifies as “under the influence”? Once again, the law enforcement community is working on that question and current medical marijuana testing is providing them with some valuable information to work from. Whether the current definition of impaired will also apply after July 1st is still uncertain as of this writing.

Whatever the final decision, a simple drug and alcohol test is always desirable, and all police officers would like a field test that could be administered easily and provide quick, accurate results.

The same holds true for companies that conduct drug tests on their employees. In the vast majority of cases, this is done to ensure that the firm’s safety standards are upheld. If an employee does have an issue that impairs their judgement and reflexes, thus creating a potential hazard, companies want to identify that person as soon as possible. This way, they can be transferred to another duty or put on leave while they receive treatment for the problem.

Does your company conduct drug testing? Is it something your firm is considering in the near future? While some view it as an invasion of their privacy, the safety component is extremely important, especially when the use of heavy machinery is involved.