On May 15, Connexions welcomed parents to its information session Talking to Our Kids About Drugs. Topics of discussion included an overview of services for children and youth offered in WQSB schools, youth drug culture in the Outaouais, drugs commonly used in the region, and how to talk with your elementary and high school child about drugs (incl. alcohol, tobacco/e-cigarettes, prescription medication, marijuana and MDMA).
Our guest speakers, Polly Green and Erica Tomkinson, from the WQSB Drug Awareness Resource Team (DART), offered parents a slew of information with specifics on the rise of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or potency levels of drugs in the past years and the subsequent side effects, including paranoia, psychosis, anxiety, stress, mood alterations, etc. specific to children and youth on drugs and its effects on their developing minds. Polly and Erica also shared information on their role within the WQSB as drug and alcohol technicians and provided in-depth knowledge of trending drugs in the Outaouais, the possible effects on youth due to the upcoming legalization of marijuana, the rise in fentanyl found in street drugs and why it is being used by sellers, the naloxone kit, as well as the importance of talking to our children at a young age and creating a strong, trusting bond.
Parents were thrilled with the evening and the depth of knowledge of the guest speakers, specifically their knowledge of the drug culture within the WQSB schools and new studies that they shared on the effects of drugs on the developing brain. The event finished with a Q&A that lasted an extra hour, which the parents greatly appreciated and welcomed.
A special thank you to Beth Burns, Director of Complementary Services at the Western Quebec School Board, and Shannon Davis Lafond, EHDAA Parent Commissioner, for their help in organizing this event. And of course a HUGE thank you to our guest speakers, Polly Green and Erica Tomkinson, from the WQSB DART Team for an amazing evening! To find out about upcoming information sessions and workshops, subscribe to our Newsletter.
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