Canada’s Anti-Marijuana Campaign Thumbed Down by Very Own Doctors

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | August 18, 2014 12:14 PM EST

The three main groups representing 80,000 Canadian doctors have thumbed down calls of federal government for them to support an upcoming anti-drug campaign. The drive, meant to target young people, had become highly political, they said.

REUTERS/Blair Gable
A marijuana plant is seen at Tweed Marijuana Inc in Smith's Falls, Ontario, March 19, 2014. By unlocking the once-obscure medical marijuana market, Canada has created a fast-growing, profitable and federally regulated industry with a distinct appeal to the more daring global investor. About a dozen producers of the drug will find themselves in the spotlight this year as they consider going public or prepare to so through share sales or reverse takeovers to capitalize on recent regulatory changes, investment bankers said. Tweed Marijuana Inc, which converted an old chocolate factory into a marijuana farm, led the pack by becoming the first publicly held Canadian company in the sector. Picture taken March 19, 2014.

Health Canada is working on an advertising campaign geared for the young people about the dangers of marijuana and prescription drugs. The drive reportedly will cost a whopping $5 million of taxpayers' money.

"The educational campaign has now become a political football on Canada's marijuana policy and for this reason the CFPC, CMA and Royal College will not be participating. We did not, and do not, support or endorse any political messaging or political advertising on this issue," the groups said in a joint statement.

The groups are specifically the College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC), Canadian Medical Association (CMA) and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

Instead, they committed to continue working on raising the awareness of the young people on the potential health risks of drugs and alcohol.

Earlier, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau blasted the planned million dollars-worth campaign. He said it was disheartening for the federal government to think of using taxpayers' money just to criticise him and his party's position of decriminalising marijuana.

"We know that Canadian taxpayers are getting extremely frustrated with the fact this government tends to use public money for ads that do more for its partisan aims than for actual public service," the Globe and Mail quoted Trudeau.

Justice Minister Peter MacKay blasted Trudeau and his group in November 2013 because their position "directly delivers a message to children now that recreational drug use is OK."

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(Photo: REUTERS/Blair Gable / )
A marijuana plant is seen at Tweed Marijuana Inc in Smith's Falls, Ontario, March 19, 2014. By unlocking the once-obscure medical marijuana market, Canada has created a fast-growing, profitable and federally regulated industry with a distinct appeal to the more daring global investor. About a dozen producers of the drug will find themselves in the spotlight this year as they consider going public or prepare to so through share sales or reverse takeovers to capitalize on recent regulatory changes, investment bankers said. Tweed Marijuana Inc, which converted an old chocolate factory into a marijuana farm, led the pack by becoming the first publicly held Canadian company in the sector. Picture taken March 19, 2014.
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