The federal government making cannabis use legal in Canada has prompted a change in the drug and alcohol policy in effect at Ontario Northland.

Renee Baker, Ontario Northland’s communications manager, says the policy was amended last month to take cannabis use into account.

“All employees are required to report and remain fit for duty (and) free of the negative effects of alcohol, cannabis or any other drug,” Baker said.

“It’s the responsibility of all Ontario Northland employees to self-evaluate their fitness for duty.  We’re just reinforcing that all our employees are required to report and remain fit for duty.”

Baker says there is no random drug testing at Ontario Northland.

She adds supervisors are trained on how to administer the policy so that in the event the policy is breached, an investigation can be conducted to determine whether or not the policy was breached.

Baker says the process to determine if a breach occurred is lengthy and it starts with a drug test.

This is especially true for people in safety-sensitive positions.

Baker says there are a variety of disciplinary measures Ontario Northland could take against an employee if it’s proven the worker breached the drug and alcohol policy.

She says the type of consequence depends on the position of the individual as well as the circumstances surrounding the matter.

However, Baker notes Ontario Northland has a very good set of workers.

“We’re really proud of the employees who take ownership in providing safe and reliable transportation to over 300,000 passengers and over four million kilograms of goods we transport every year,” said Baker.