Nunavut Post

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Inuit harm-reduction techniques are the subject of a cannabis campaign

cannabis campaign

Key Takeaways:

  • This project aims to better educate Inuit communities about cannabis use.
  • A new Inuit-focused campaign is giving facts about cannabis usage to educate consumers and limit potential dangers.

Let’s Talk About Ujarak was launched on November 29th. A Cannabis Harm Reduction Toolkit is part of a broader Health Canada-funded study aimed at helping Inuit youth and families better understand the possible consequences of cannabis use.

Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada, the country’s national representative group of Inuit women, is spearheading the campaign.

Rebecca Kudloo, president of Pauktuutit, said the campaign intends to contact Inuit who uses cannabis or are interested in trying it in a way that “reduces risks and potential effects.”

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“There are many reasons why Inuit choose to use cannabis, and harm reduction is about providing Inuit with the information they need to make safe and informed decisions for themselves,” Kudloo explained.

cannabis campaign at Pauktuutit Inuit
cannabis campaign at Pauktuutit Inuit; Image from Blackburn With Darwen

Fact sheets, a discussion guide, posters, and tools for self-reflection on cannabis use habits are included in the toolkit. In addition, Pauktuutit’s Cannabis Project Advisory Committee, comprised of Inuit representatives from across Canada, collaborated with Inuit youth to develop campaign messaging, according to Kudloo. The campaign’s website is available in English, Inuktitut, and Inuinnaqtun.

The campaign’s approach, rather than promoting abstinence or prevention, is intended to de-stigmatize and empower Inuit who use cannabis, according to Kudloo. She went on to say that social stigma surrounding drugs can be a barrier to having open conversations about cannabis use.

Cannabis education and information that is consistent with Inuit’s unique experiences and beliefs, as well as that recognises the diversity of cannabis usage experiences.”

Pauktuutit conducted interviews with nearly 100 research participants representing each of the Inuit Nunangat regions and southern centres to help structure the campaign, according to Kudloo. Pauktuutit conducted interviews with almost 100 research participants representing each Inuit Nunangat region and southern centers to help structure the campaign.

The campaign is slated to last until March 2023. Still, Kudloo said Pauktuutit aims to continue assisting service providers in developing tools and resources to better educate themselves on how to serve the best Inuit, “rather than putting the burden of navigating complex health systems on Inuit.”

Source: Nunatsiaq News

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