If you’re like many HR leaders in Canada, you may be feeling a little unprepared for the upcoming marijuana legalization – with many organizations seemingly taking a “wait and see” approach to internal policy and benefit plan adjustments.
It’s our responsibility as people-leaders and industry stakeholders to accept the reality of the situation and take the initiative to prepare our organizations for change. The good news for HR teams is that you won’t have to do this on your own. Expert guidance is available.
For example, at League our Benefits Consultants are working with our clients to explain the impact of the upcoming legislation and help them evaluate possible plan design options. Our team has been fielding questions from HR leaders about cannabis, workplace safety, and employee health.
So while this is a historic change, there’s no reason for those of us overseeing our organization’s HR policies and health benefits plans to feel intimidated. Yet, if you look at the sentiment of Canadian HR leaders that appears to be exactly what is happening.
A survey by the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) showed that 71% of employers do not feel prepared for the change in legislation. And only 11% of employers said they have a policy in place for medical marijuana. This may not be too surprising considering that 89% of HR respondents said they have never had to accommodate an employee making a request for medical cannabis.
My take-away from these numbers is that HR leaders are feeling a little reluctant to take a firm stance on the issue. So what’s causing this hesitation?
A common concern, as it would be with any drug, is safety. In fact, 47% of HR leaders said that ensuring workplace safety is their top concern when it comes to marijuana legalization.
But in many cases, the hesitation to act seems to stem from the feeling that they simply haven’t had an adequate chance to educate themselves on the issue. It’s that very desire for clarity on best practices, guidelines, and sample policies that was one of the top requests noted in the HRPA survey.
Fortunately, there are trusted experts in the field we can all turn to for guidance – and we’ll be bringing two of the very best to you in our upcoming webinar:
Jason Fleming is the Director of HR at MedReleaf – one of the largest licensed producers of cannabis in Canada. As one of our featured speakers, Jason will be discussing:
- The Canadian cannabis industry
- Medical vs. recreational cannabis
- Employer risks, accountabilities, and considerations
- Managing cannabis in the workplace
Our co-presenter will be Mike Sullivan, CEO of Cubic Health – an independent drug plan management and healthcare analytics company. Mike will be breaking down:
- What other plan sponsors (companies) are doing to prepare
- Cannabis considerations for plan sponsors
- Why cannabis legislation matters for all plans
- Key coverage considerations
Many HR leaders will be particularly interested in what Mike has to say about coverage considerations, considering 78% of employers said they have not currently done any work to get marijuana covered by their benefits plan.
We’re so lucky to have Jason and Mike joining us, and I personally can’t wait to tap into their expertise to ensure our stakeholders receive the support they need on this complex new requirement. This webinar will undoubtedly provide many HR leaders with the comfort and confidence they need begin facing marijuana legalization head-on.
Remember, your organization already has policies in place regarding drugs and alcohol, this challenge will be no different. We are committed to helping you get prepared. Please click here to register for our free webinar on Everything HR Leaders Need to Know about Cannabis Legislation.