SMITHS FALLS, ON, May 16, 2016 /CNW/ - Canada's largest medical cannabis producer today announced plans to fund a national campaign to raise awareness of impairment in relation to operating a motor vehicle under the influence of cannabis. The campaign will be developed and administered by two of the country's leading organizations in promoting evidence based drug policy and safe driving, the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition (CDPC) and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD Canada).
Funding will be provided to MADD Canada over three years by Canopy Growth Corporation (Canopy Growth) (TSX.V: CGC), whose wholly owned subsidiaries Tweed Inc. (Tweed) and Bedrocan Canada Inc. (Bedrocan Canada) will fund the campaign using proceeds from a previously announced education fund dedicated towards responsible use of cannabis.
"We're proud to be bringing together the Canadian leaders in sober driving campaigns with leaders in the development of responsible drug policy for this important initiative. Now that we're on the verge of a legal access to cannabis for personal use, it's time to step up and do our part as responsible corporate citizens," said Bruce Linton, Chairman & CEO, Canopy Growth.
As Canada prepares to be the first industrialized country to implement cannabis legalization for personal use, MADD Canada is partnering with Canopy Growth to help prevent an increase in the incidence of impaired driving. MADD Canada's efforts to raise awareness and reduce impaired driving in Canada have saved an estimated thirty-five thousand lives through impactful and memorable public campaigns.
"MADD Canada has had a great deal of success in reducing the number of impaired drivers on Canadian roads," said MADD Canada Chief Executive Officer Andrew Murie. "As laws change in Canada we think it's important to take the same approach to cannabis as we have with alcohol, particularly given an increasing presence of cannabis in driving incidents already. MADD Canada continues to raise awareness on the risks of drug-impaired driving, and we are pleased to be part of this new national campaign to educate the public and reduce the number of people who drive while impaired by cannabis."
The Canadian Drug Policy Coalition will contribute the research basis and third party expertise to ensure that the campaign is designed using international best practices.
"Ensuring that Canadians understand responsible cannabis use and its impact on impairment when operating a motor vehicle is an important part of moving to a regulated market for cannabis in Canada," said Donald MacPherson, Executive Director of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition. There is an emerging body of research that we can lean on to help Canadians understand impaired driving, understand when they are impaired and make responsible choices."
Consuming cannabis responsibly applies equally to medical and non-medical cannabis use. Canada's medical cannabis user base grows every month and non-medical use under a regulatory framework will also increase the number of Canadians consuming cannabis. Tweed and Bedrocan are proud to play a leadership role collaborating with world-class partners like MADD Canada and the CDPC to ensure that as Canada moves forward with cannabis policy reform, we collectively create the needed tools to ensure that education and public safety remain at the forefront of the conversation.
About MADD Canada
MADD Canada (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) is a national, charitable organization that is committed to stopping impaired driving and supporting the victims of this violent crime. With volunteer-driven groups in more than 100 communities across Canada, MADD Canada aims to offer support services to victims, heighten awareness of the dangers of impaired driving and save lives and prevent injuries on our roads. To learn more, visit www.madd.ca.
About Canopy Growth Corporation
Canopy Growth is Canada's first publicly traded medical cannabis company and the first geographically diversified producer with multiple licenses under the Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations. Through its wholly owned subsidiaries, Tweed, Tweed Farms, and Bedrocan Canada, the Company operates three state-of-the-art production facilities in Ontario and distributes cannabis across the country to Canadian patients managing a host of medical conditions. The Company is dedicated to educating healthcare practitioners, providing consistent access to high quality medication, conducting robust clinical research, and furthering the public's understanding of how cannabis is used for medical purposes. www.canopygrowth.com
About Canadian Drug Policy Coalition
The Canadian Drug Policy Coalition is comprised of over 70 organizations and 3000 individuals working to support the development of a drug policy for Canada that is based in science and the principles of public health, is respectful of the human rights of all, and seeks to include people who use drugs and those harmed by the criminalization of drugs in moving towards a healthier Canadian society. CDPC is a project of the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia.
SOURCE Canopy Growth Corporation
For further information: Jordan Sinclair, Communications Manager, Tweed, Jordan@tweed.com, 613-706-2185 ex 309; Deb Kelly, Communication Manager, MADD Canada, DKelly@madd.ca; Shea Dewar, Communications Coordinator for CDPC, 778-837-6502, firstname.lastname@example.org