What Is Your Workplace Doing About Recreational Cannabis Use?

New study highlights strong disconnect between managers and employees on recreational cannabis use and expectation in the workplace

Nearly 68 per cent say they are somewhat or very familiar with the changes to the laws related to the legalization of cannabis for recreational use and where it will be allowed to be consumed.

According to a new poll from Ipsos, commissioned by ADP Canada, the changing legal status of cannabis in Canadahighlights a disconnect between employers and employees, especially as it relates to when and how cannabis can be consumed at work.

According to the survey, only six per cent of employed Canadians believe their organizations will allow the use of cannabis (marijuana) for recreational purposes during work hours or before coming into work. However, managers (10 per cent) are much more likely to say it will be allowed than employees without managerial responsibilities (two per cent). In fact, nearly one in five managers (19 per cent) say they are at least somewhat likely to consume cannabis for recreational purposes before going to work, and 14 per cent say it’s at least somewhat likely they will consume cannabis during work hours – vastly outnumbering non-managers, where only seven per cent said they will likely use cannabis before work, and only four per cent say they will use during work.

“Changes in the workplace are always difficult to navigate, but it appears cannabis legalization for recreational purposes adds a particularly complex disconnect between the expectations and intentions of employers and their employees,” said Hendrik Steenkamp, Director, HR Advisory, ADP Canada. “It’s particularly interesting to see that employees without managerial responsibilities are more reserved in their expectations of personal use during working hours than their managerial counterparts.”

Another cause of the disconnect between managers and employees stems from their understanding of formal policies and guidelines surrounding the use of drugs and alcohol in the workplace. While 75 per cent of managers say they are aware of such policies in their places of employment, only 64 per cent of non-managers say the same – with a further 17 per cent saying they do not believe their workplace has specified policies or guidelines to regulate drug and alcohol usage. Furthermore, while 36 per cent of managers say that their organizations are introducing or revising their workplace policies and guidelines because of the impending legalization of recreational cannabis, only 13 per cent of non-managers say this is happening in their workplace – with nearly half (49 per cent) saying they are unsure if their policies and guidelines are being updated or revised.

“It’s clear, managers need to have detailed, informed and thorough conversations with employees about what constitutes acceptable behaviour in the workplace when it comes to cannabis” says Steenkamp. “Having these conversations early on will help to set clear expectations on both sides and reduce the chance for any negative impact on workplace performance and productivity.”

Posted in All Stories, News

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