An Ontario labour arbitrator has upheld a grievance filed by the United Steelworkers union at Chalk River and has ordered Canadian Nuclear Laboratories to pay $1,000 to an employee for “breach of privacy” after he was ordered to undergo a drug and alcohol test.
The case dates back to March 8, 2022, when the employee was a radiation surveyor trainee with seven months’ experience.
He was completing a routine morning inspection of waste management area B at Chalk River when he drove his truck off the road and into a “tile hole” array.
The tile holes – 16 feet deep and encased in concrete – contain highly radioactive waste, including “spent fuel from nuclear reactors and radioactive isotopes.”
It had snowed heavily the night before and the roads in the waste management area had not been plowed.
During the inspection, the employee was expected to drive slowly through the waste management area while at the same time monitoring radiation detection equipment.
After driving off the road, he reported the incident as required and CNL ordered him to undergo “post-incident” drug and alcohol testing…
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