REGINA, Sask. – Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) president Stephen Laskowski’s position on marijuana in the workplace is clear – zero tolerance, no exceptions.
Speaking during the Saskatchewan Trucking Association (STA) 80th anniversary AGM Oct. 21, Laskowski voiced concern over the Canadian government’s plans to legalize the drug, saying without a means to test impairment, the move would pose “way too many issues” for trucking companies.
“It will be an administrative nightmare for you to manage that,” Laskowski said to STA AGM attendees, adding that marijuana testing can only provide evidence of use, lacking a measure of impairment.
Laskowski’s stance extended to those who are legally using medical marijuana, which is used for a variety of ailments and can be recommended by a doctor.
“If you need medical marijuana, you don’t drive a truck,” he said, applauding attendees for bringing the issue more to light.
Laskowski said he would bring the industry’s legalization of marijuana concerns to Ottawa, saying whether its use is for medical or recreational purposes, “we don’t care.”
“Do the right thing,” Laskowski urged the Liberal Government on the marijuana issue.
The CTA president said once there is a way to test for levels of impairment from marijuana, the industry should adopt the same policy as it does with alcohol, which allows for a .02 blood level, which accounts for the use of some cough medicines and mouthwash, which contain low levels of alcohol.
Susan Ewart, executive director of the STA, stood behind the CTA position on mandatory drug and alcohol testing within the industry.
Reg Quiring was named new board chairman for the STA, replacing Graham Newton, who moves to the past board chairman positon.
“I am proud to fill the position of board chair and am excited to work collaboratively with the membership to accomplish much in the coming year,” said Quiring. “I would like to thank Graham Newton, the outgoing board chair. Graham stepped up for the STA when the board needed new leadership mid-term, and throughout his time as chair has helped usher in many changes to the association, all for the better. The importance of membership engagement cannot be stressed enough – we are only effective together.”
Quiring, Newton, Brett Marcoux, first board chairman, and Glen Ertell make up the STA executive committee, with two new additions added to the board, Nithi Govindasamy and James Gordon, who will serve on the government relations and membership committees respectively.
For a full list of board members, visit https://sasktrucking.com/about-us/board-of-directors.
The STA handed out a trifecta of awards during its AGM in Regina, with Volvo Driver of the Year going to Kristin Finch of Kindersley Transport.
Brenda Cuthbert of Siemens Transportation Group took home the Omnitracs Service to the Industry award, and the Cervus Equipment Peterbilt Dispatcher of the Year was Ian Brown of Transall Group of Companies.
Three scholarships were also handed out by the STA Group of Companies, valued at $5,000 total for post-secondary education.
Dylan McLeod received $3,000 to attend Saskatchewan Polytechnic, Austin Wong, a student at NAIT, and Swade Orchard, who attends the University of Saskatchewan, both pocketed $1,000 to go toward their studies.
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