The Cannabis Act came into force in October 2018, marking a significant milestone in the Government of Canada’s commitment to legalising and strictly regulating the cannabis. Public education about cannabis is fundamental to achieve the Government’s objective of protecting public health and safety.
The Government of Canada announced an investment of more than $1.8 million over three years under Health Canada’s Substance Use and Addictions Program (SUAP). This funding will support the Government of the Northwest Territories in developing and delivering a comprehensive and interactive cannabis public education campaign. Through the use of traditional media and social media platforms, augmented reality, community-led engagement sessions and other innovative public education tools, the campaign will bring health and safety information to communities across the territory.
By working collaboratively with provincial and territorial governments and a range of partners, the Government of Canada is able to maximise the reach of its public education efforts and to ensure that Canadians have access to the information needed to make informed choices about cannabis use.
Ginette Petitpas Taylor, the Honourable Minister of Health said, “The Government of Canada is expanding its cannabis public education efforts by investing in community-based projects. This campaign will provide Northerners with factual information to help them make informed decisions about cannabis use.”
“I am pleased that the Government of Canada is supporting the Government of the Northwest Territories in its cannabis public education efforts. Collaborative partnerships such as this one are helping to provide Canadians with clear, consistent and evidence-based information on the health and safety facts about cannabis”, says Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament.
Glen Abernethy, Minister of Health and Social Services for the Northwest Territories said, “This federal investment will support activities in communities throughout Northwest Territories that will help residents, particularly young people, have access to culturally safe information that will help them make healthy and responsible choices on cannabis use.”
In Budget 2018, the Government of Canada announced an investment of $62.5 million over five years to support community-based organisations as well as Indigenous organisations and governments that are educating their communities on the risks associated with cannabis use.
Health Canada’s Substance Use and Addictions Program provides funding for evidence-informed and innovative awareness, prevention, harm reduction and treatment initiatives addressing a range of substances, including cannabis. The Government of the Northwest Territories will use this funding to lead community engagement activities, launch a media campaign using both social media and traditional media, and develop public education and awareness materials for different segments of the population.