In the case of Enver vs Barloworld Equipment (JS 633/20 and JS 926/20 1/6/2022) the Labour Court upheld the dismissal of an employee who tested positive for cannabis in her bloodstream after having used the substance for medical reasons. At her disciplinary hearing the employee had failed both to offer evidence that she had used the cannabis for medical purposes and to prove that it had been necessary to use it due to a medical condition. While the employee was not in a safety sensitive post and claimed that the test had revealed only residual cannabis that had been left in her body the employer proved that it had a zero tolerance policy due to the dangers inherent in the workplace. Did the Labour Court make the right decision?
What we need to take int account is that a Zero Tolerance policy is not always justified under the circumstances. In this case the employee was not in a safety sensitive job. Therefore, it is questionable that the Zero Tolerance policy should have applied to her. If her job did not require her to go to high-risk areas of the business, there was no reason to object to the employee having residual cannabis in her system