Urinalysis and the Alberta Human Rights Commission

Everyone who lives in the camps north of Fort McMurray must submit urine to their employer for drug testing every time they switch work sites, change companies, or get hurt on the job.

The oil companies claim the plants are “their sandbox” where they make their own rules, and the drug dogs and forced urine collection are for the “safety” of their workers.

In arguments before the Alberta Human Rights Commission, Syncrude contended that every job, from the electrician pulling cable to the janitor cleaning tables, was “safety related”, and therefore required drug testing. Unbelievably, the Human Rights Commission sided with Syncrude, with no regard for the workers’ rights whatsoever. They are no more than cowardly, sold-out, hypocrites, who have betrayed the citizens of this province.

It’s worth mentioning that these corporations have not stopped at drug-testing the tens of thousands who live in their camps. Increasingly they have also outlawed drinking in the evenings after work, admitting (in their orientation videos) that it is because this policy increases workday productivity. These “dry camp” policies in the name of productivity show that they’re lying when they claim their drug policies are just so the workers “go home safe at the end of the day”.

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