The Canadian Human Rights Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability and perceived disability. Disability includes those with a previous or existing dependence on alcohol or a drug. Perceived disability may include an employer's perception that a person's use of alcohol or drugs makes him or her unfit to work.
Because they cannot be established as bona fide occupational requirements, the following types of testing are not acceptable:
Pre-employment drug testing
Pre-employment alcohol testing
Random drug testing
Random alcohol testing of employees in non-safety-sensitive positions.
The following types of testing may be included in a workplace drug- and alcohol-testing program, but only if an employer can demonstrate that they are BONA FIDE OCCUPATIONAL REQUIREMENTS:
RANDOM ALCOHOL TESTING OF EMPLOYEES IN SAFETY SENSITIVE POSITIONS:
Alcohol testing has been found to be a reasonable requirement because alcohol testing can indicate actual impairment of ability to perform or fulfill the essential duties or requirements of the job. Random drug testing is prohibited because, given its technical limitations, drug testing can only detect the presence of drugs and not if or when an employee may have been impaired by drug use.
DRUG OR ALCOHOL TESTINIG FOR REASONABLE CAUSE OR POST-ACCIDENT:
where there are reasonable grounds to believe there is an underlying problem of substance abuse or where an accident has occurred due to impairment from drugs or alcohol, provided that testing is a part of a broader program of medical assessment, monitoring and support.
PERIODIC OR RANDOM TESTING FOLLOWING DISCLOSURE OF A CURRENT DRUG OR ALCOHOL DEPENDENC /ABUSE PROBLEM
may be acceptable if tailored to individual circumstances and as part of a broader program of monitoring and support. Usually, a designated rehabilitation provider will... [continues]
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