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Can an Ontario employer request that his employees be non-smokers?

By Ron Guest |

Rob asked:

Can an employer request that his employees be non-smokers, at an Ontario employer?

Ron Guest answered:

No. However, employers may come to find out if an employee is a smoker, and then use that information to consider when hiring, not that this is legal, but the employer would perhaps not ever divulge that this was really considered as an employment factor. Clients of mine have asked me this before: How do we hire non-smokers? The answer is you don't ask this to employees in an interview, a skilled interviewer can find out without asking the question directly.

However, the other issue is to understand why this is important to employers; as an example, if it is because of lost time away from work because they are outside smoking, then deal with that problem separately by reviewing your breaks policy in the company.

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