From Ski Hills to Parliament Hill: June is Brain Injury Awareness Month in Canada

    GATINEAU, QC, June 2 /CNW Telbec/ - The Brain Injury Association of
Canada (BIAC) and its national partners are gearing up for Brain Injury
Awareness Month in Canada, June 2008. From the movie house to the House of
Commons, events aiming to inform and protect Canadians against this costly,
yet preventable injury will occur throughout the month.
    "Some sport helmets sold in Canada offer no more protection than putting
a bag of milk over your head." - Ski Canada Magazine (December 2002)
    Locally and nationally, Brain Injury Awareness Month brings to light the
ongoing struggle organizations such as the Brain Injury Association of Canada
have chosen to undertake to reduce the number of preventable injuries in
Canada, including brain injuries. Treating preventable injuries costs
Canadians $14.7 billion per year. This price is putting Canadian business at
an economic disadvantage, lowering the standard of living for all Canadians,
and putting our publicly funded health care system at risk.
    In June, the BIAC will ask Canadians to do their part to protect
themselves, and their children. Many communities and legislators are already
doing their part. Olympic host municipality, West Vancouver, has taken a
resolution to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities urging them to develop
a national injury prevention strategy. The Canadian Standards Association will
publish, in June, the world's best standard for ski and snow-board helmets;
however, helmet manufacturers have refused to apply these standards unless
legislated to by the federal government. Doctor Hedy Fry, MLA for Vancouver
Center, has written to Prime Minister Harper, asking for an Order in Council
to have her private members bill (C-412) passed. Bill C-412, if enacted would
amend the Hazardous Products Act, and prohibit the advertising, sale, or
import into Canada of recreational snow sport helmets that do not meet the
requirements of applicable Canadian Standards Association specifications.
    "There is no legislation requiring other sport helmets to be CSA
approved. This places many children and youth at risk of serious brain
injuries or death." - George Abbott, Health Minister, British Columbia
    To support Dr. Fry's efforts, Canadians are asked to visit so they can tell our prime minister and health minister
that we need Bill C-412. Until such a law is passed, our government is turning
its back on the leading killer and disabler of children and young adults in
Canada. As a result, Canada will remain near the bottom of a list of countries
whose governments invest in youth injury prevention programmes.

    June 2008: Brain Injury Awareness Month Activities

    - June 6, Lower Mainland Brain Injury Association Community Picnic: To
    celebrate Brain Injury Awareness Month, the LMBIA is organizing a
    picnic to encourage brain injury survivors, their family and friends,
    to get behind Canadian injury prevention efforts. Richard Kinar,
    spokesperson for the BIAC, will be a guest speaker. For information,
    contact Gabrielle Martin at 604-521-0833, extension 225, or
    - June 11, 8pm:  Wipe Out to air on the British Columbia's Knowledge
    Network. The film-which premiered at Vancouver's DOXA Documentary Film
    Festival, May 30th- highlights the dangers and consequences of head
    injuries through the eyes of extreme sport accident victims; and is
    produced by British Columbia's Knowledge Network, written and directed
    by award-winning film maker, Lionel Goddard, and narrated by Canadian
    Olympic gold snow-boarder Ross Rebagliati.
    - Beginning June 11: a companion website to Wipe Out will be accessible
    at In addition to being able to view
    the documentary in its entirety, the website will offer valuable
    resources for parents and teachers, a video blog, and messaging for
    - Hawaiian Oyster Odysseys ( occur all
    over the country throughout the year. In June there will be two:
    Charlottetown, June 7, and Vancouver, June 16.  These fun fundraisers
    raise awareness of brain injuries and their impact on survivors and
    their families.
    - BIAC Bursary:  In June, the BIAC will award its first $2,000 bursary to
    a brain injury survivor pursuing post-secondary education opportunities
    in an English or French institution or apprenticeship/trades program in

    Brain Injury Association of Canada (

    The BIAC's mission is to improve the quality of life for all Canadians
affected by acquired brain injury and promote its prevention. It is dedicated
to facilitating post-trauma research, education and advocacy in partnership
with national, provincial/territorial and regional associations, and other
stakeholders. The BIAC is incorporated as a national charitable organization
under the Canada Corporations Act and Canada Revenue Agency.

For further information:

For further information: on Wipe-Out, helmet issues, or interview
requests, contact: Richard Kinar, Brain Injury Association of Canada, (604)
922-8197, Cell: (604) 910-2435,; For information on
Brain Injury Awareness Month or the bursary program, please contact: Yvan
Teasdale, Chair, Government Relations and Public Affairs Committee, Brain
Injury Association of Canada, (819) 685-9023,

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