copyright: 123rf_Сергей Толмачев

Nearly half (44 per cent) of Canadian workplaces now have formal policies on vaping at work, according to a new survey by the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans.

The new policies comes in the wake of the ballooning number of vapers globally; in 2018, 14 million people vaped, compared to seven million in 2011.

Julie Stich, vice-president of content at the IFEBP, said employers’ vaping policies tend to align with existing smoking policies. “If a workplace doesn’t fall under the federal or provincial law, it’s up to the employer to decide whether to ban vaping at work, taking into consideration how e-cigarette use fits into the company’s culture and goals,” he said in a press released. “The evolving investigation into the outbreak of lung injuries due to vaping is also causing employers to look at this issue from a safety and well-being perspective.”

Read: Should non-smokers get extra vacation time?

In Canada, workplace smoking and vaping policies vary. More than half (54 per cent) of employers limit smoking to designated outdoor areas, while nearly a quarter (23 per cent) permit smoking outside of the building. Just 16 per cent prohibit smoking on the entire campus including parking and outdoor areas. Only four per cent said they have smoking policies that vary by worksite and even fewer employers (three per cent) said they don’t prohibit smoking anywhere.

The survey also found 60 per cent of Canadian organizations offer tobacco or smoking-cessation programs to their employees. Among employers that track the effectiveness of these programs, 68 per cent rated it as very or somewhat effective. Some six per cent of employers said they plan to add a tobacco or smoking-cessation wellness offering in the next two years.

Read: Staples Canada’s $750 incentive to quit smoking

Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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