The Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Health, accompanied by Stockwell Day, Minister of Public Safety, and Rob Nicholson, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada today announced the Government's support for the Drug Prevention Strategy for Canada's Youth, which is an initiative that will help to steer youth away from using illicit drugs and is part of the Government's new National Anti-Drug Strategy.
The strategy, which is supported by a Government of Canada investment of $10 million, will be developed and implemented by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (CCSA).
“The Government of Canada is very concerned about the damage and pain that illicit drugs cause families and our communities,” said Minister Clement. “We take this issue seriously and are proud to partner with the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse to take action in discouraging youth from using illicit drugs and informing them of the harmful effects of illicit drug use.”
The goal of the CCSA's project is to reduce illicit drug use among Canadian youth between the ages of 10 and 24, including high-risk youth, focusing on risk and protective factors before drug use begins. The project will initiate the development of national standards for drug prevention programs and will support families, schools, communities, and individuals across Canada with the tools and information they need when confronted with illicit drugs.
“Our Government recognizes that illegal drugs destroy lives, rob young people of their futures and endanger our communities,” said the Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of Public Safety. “This is why we are firmly determined to help people overcome addictions, prevent others from falling prey to this terrible problem and crack down on those who profit from this suffering through the production and sale of drugs.”
Also in attendance was Michel Perron, Chief Executive Officer of the CCSA: “The National Anti-Drug Strategy has allowed the CCSA to launch a new national drug prevention partnership for youth, to initiate the development of national standards for drug prevention programs in schools and communities across Canada, and to create a communication platform through a newly formed media consortium aimed at capitalizing on public and private sector expertise to reach youth across Canada," said Mr. Perron. "This work, aimed at supporting families, schools, communities and individuals across Canada, will equip young people and their parents with the tools and information they need when confronted with illicit drugs."
“I am pleased that our Government is working with partners like the Canadian Centre for Substance Abuse,” said Minister Nicholson. “Through this collaboration, we will discourage youth from using illicit drugs and inform them of the harmful effects of illicit drug use.”
Minister Clement also took the opportunity to remind Canadians of the upcoming deadline for the call for proposals under the Drug Strategy Community Initiatives Fund. The Government has invested over $7 million to fund important initiatives that will address illicit drug use among youth and the underlying factors that contribute to the use of illicit drugs. The Community Initiatives Fund will enable communities to develop the tools they need to tackle the increasing challenge of drug use among our young people. The deadline for proposals is February 29, 2008.
The new National Anti-Drug Strategy focuses on preventing illegal drug use in young people, treating people who have drug addictions and fighting illegal drug crime.
source: Health Canada