Message from the Executives
Update on random drug and alcohol testing at the TTC
On October 17, 2018 it became legal to use and possess cannabis in Canada. An updated Fitness for Duty Guide is now available ttc.ca. A copy of this updated Employee Guide, along with the letter below from CEO Rick Leary, will be mailed to all employees in the coming weeks.
In May 2017, we began conducting random drug and alcohol tests for all employees in safety-sensitive positions, as well as specified management and designated executives of the TTC. Random testing is one component of the TTC’s comprehensive Fitness for Duty Policy that has been in place since 2010 where the expectation is that each of us report for work, and remain, fit for duty. This program is administered by a third-party provider, DriverCheck Inc.
Since we introduced random testing, we have had 64 failed tests – 60 of those were for drugs or alcohol.
Your well-being is always the most important consideration in the work we do and random drug and alcohol testing has everything to do with ensuring your safety, the safety of your co-workers, as well as the safety of our customers and other road users. We cannot ensure that level of safety if employees are reporting to work when they are not fit for duty. The vast majority of us, of course, would never consider reporting to work when we might be unfit for duty. For those that do, the consequences are severe.
On October 17, 2018, Canadians over the age of 18 will be able to purchase recreational cannabis across the country. The legalization of cannabis does not remove the expectation that TTC employees must come to work fit for duty at all times. That expectation does not change.
As mentioned in previous communications to employees, the TTC uses oral fluid drug testing for post-incident, reasonable cause and random drug tests. It detects recent cannabis usage that would affect someone’s ability to work safely.
We have updated the Fitness for Duty Policy, our FAQs and made revisions to the FFD employee booklet that you are receiving today.
The employee guide includes all of the information you need to know about the random testing program, including how tests are administered, employee and supervisor responsibilities, drug and alcohol cut-off levels, information about taking medications, and how to reach out for help or extra support if you believe you may have a drug or alcohol dependency. It is updated to reflect the new regulations surrounding recreational cannabis.
An online version of this guide is also available on the TTC website at ttc.ca and on the intranet. Please take the time to read it.
If you have any questions, please ask your Manager or Supervisor – they are familiar with this program and have received specific training about how it works. Additional contact information is outlined in the guide.
It’s extremely important to emphasize how much we value the security, privacy and confidentiality of your information. An employee’s drug or alcohol use during personal time is not relevant unless it creates the potential for impairment during working hours. The testing program ensures safety at work by identifying likely impairment on the job. Results are delivered as a pass or fail based on threshold limits set by the TTC and supported by science and experts in the field.
If you believe you may have a substance use disorder associated with cannabis or any other substance, there is support available. You may contact the TTC’s Occupational Health and Claims Department confidentially at 416-393-6112. Confidential counselling is also available through the Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) at 1-800-572-0039.
Please read this guide. It’s a valuable resource in helping you understand drug and alcohol testing and the TTC’s Fitness for Duty Policy. The TTC has an obligation to you, as well as the public, to be the safest transit system it can be.
Richard J. Leary
Chief Executive Officer