The CNSC held a meeting in Ottawa August 16-17 to discuss the 2016 Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants and the proposed Fitness for Duty REGDOC (2.2.4) that addresses Random Drug and Alcohol testing. President Scott Travers and Unit Director Ralph Chatoor were on hand for the two days to observe and answer any questions that the regulator may have.
On August 16, the CNSC examined the performance of the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station and Pickering Nuclear Generating Station against the 14 Safety and Control areas. Darlington and Pickering both obtained Fully Satisfactory ratings.
On August 17, the proposed REGDOC 2.2.4, Fitness for Service – Drug and Alcohol testing was discussed. This document has been under development for the past six years.
"The regulatory scheme set out in this REGDOC mandates workplace drug and alcohol testing in the absence of reasonable cause to suspect impairment. Jurisprudence regarding drug and alcohol testing from Canadian courts and boards of arbitration support the Society’s position, that the testing contemplated by this REGDOC is an unreasonable invasion of employees’ privacy rights under Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. It’s unreasonable, because there is no evidence of a problem which must be addressed and no evidence that this testing that’s being proposed would actually improve public safety. It’s the position of the Society that random and pre-placement drug and alcohol testing will not improve safety because existing fitness for duty programs are effective. The existing human performance programs effectively minimize the risk of impairment related to incidents."
The hearing attracted media attention with the CBC in attendance. Walker made a statement on behalf of the unions present.
The proposed REGDOC has not yet been approved as it has gone back to the CNSC staff for additional consideration.