Pot: What Are the Rules at Work?

In the News

Cannabis (pot) is now legal in Canada. But that doesn’t mean you can consume it or be high anytime, anywhere. There are special rules for cannabis in the workplace. 

Note: These rules apply to recreational cannabis. The rules may be different for medical marijuana.

At the workplace

It is against the law to smoke cannabis in most workplaces. As with cigarettes, the 9-metre rule applies. You are thus prohibited from smoking cannabis within 9 metres of a door, window or air vent at a place of work. 

In some cases, it is also against the law to possess cannabis at work. For example, if you work at:

  • a Centre de la petite enfance (CPE – a subsidized Childcare Centre) or a daycare
  • certain educational institutions, like an elementary school or high school
  • a detention centre

Working under the influence

Working under the influence of cannabis is prohibited if this could be dangerous for yourself or others. No matter what your job is, working while high at a construction site is always considered dangerous.

Your employer must make sure that this rule is respected. You can be disciplined if your employer notices that your state of mind prevents you from working safely.

Even if you aren’t high, you can’t consume cannabis during work hours if you are looking after a minor, a senior or another vulnerable person.

Additional employer rules

Employers can also adopt stricter policies on cannabis in the workplace, just like they can with alcohol and other drugs.