Health Canada

Health Canada

December 15, 2009 10:12 ET

Government of Canada Urges Youth to Say 'Not 4 Me' When it Comes to Drugs

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 15, 2009) - The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, today unveiled the youth component of Canada's National Anti-Drug Strategy, which aims to educate young people on the dangers of illicit drugs and to turn their backs on drugs.

"Youth between the ages of 13 and 15 are the most likely to try illicit drugs for the first time," said Minister Aglukkaq, speaking with a class of Grade 9 students from Ottawa's Mother Teresa High School. "Our Government's 'Drugs not4me' campaign, which includes a website and TV ad, will help inform our kids that drugs are dangerous and destructive, and put to rest the perception that it is somehow alright to use illicit drugs."

"Our Government is committed to preventing crime and building stronger communities," said the Honourable Peter Van Loan, Minister of Public Safety. "That is why we introduced a Strategy to combat the production and distribution of illegal drugs, and invested in treatment for those with serious drug addictions. The new initiative announced today will help youth make smart choices, and avoid negative influences."

"I applaud this important initiative to reach our youth and help them stay drug free," said the Honourable Rob Nicholson, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada.

Besides an interactive and informative not4me.ca website, the campaign includes advertisements in buses, trains, subways and shopping malls across Canada, as well as Internet banners on websites popular with teens. The television commercial, which will be launched on December 28, will also be aired in movie theatres across the country in March.

"Our Government is committed to working with our partners to ensure our kids are equipped with coping and refusal skills to support their decision to refrain from experimenting with illicit drugs," said Minister Aglukkaq. "There are many health risks and social consequences from using illicit drugs. You have the power to make your own decisions."

"The Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse remains concerned about the use of illicit drugs by Canada's youth and supports the efforts of the not4me campaign," said Michel Perron, Co-Chair of the National Drug Prevention Advisory Committee and CEO of the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse. "This campaign provides an innovative platform through which young people are provided with the right information to make informed healthy choices."

The National Anti-Drug Strategy was launched by Prime Minister Stephen Harper on October 4, 2007. The Strategy is a collaborative effort involving the Department of Justice, Public Safety Canada and Health Canada and includes three action plans: preventing illicit drug use; treating those with illicit drug dependencies; and combating the production and distribution of illicit drugs.

Health Canada news releases are available on the Internet at www.healthcanada.gc.ca/media

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Contact Information

  • Media Inquiries:
    Health Canada
    613-957-2983
    or
    Office of the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq
    Federal Minister of Health
    Josee Bellemare
    613-957-0200
    or
    Public Enquiries:
    613-957-2991
    1-866-225-0709