Not Us Campaign

October 20, 2010
Ministers' Statements and Speeches

October 20, 2010 - Today, the Minister of Justice provided an update to the Legislative Assembly on Not Us, the Government of the Northwest Territories anti-drug campaign.

Mr. Speaker, I would like to provide an update to the Legislative Assembly on Not Us, the Government of the Northwest Territories anti-drug campaign.

Addictions and the crimes they lead to have serious life consequences. This government has a focus on prevention by promoting healthy choices and lifestyles, and the role of personal and family responsibility. The Not Us campaign is unique. It’s community-based, so it’s different everywhere. We don’t tell people how it’s going to be. They tell us how it’s going to be. There’s no right or wrong way to fight addictions in your community. It’s all about local control and innovation. Residents know what they need.

On September 29th, the town of Inuvik kicked off its Not Us campaign with a community feast in partnership with the schools. Their program focuses on youth and family. They’re having family nights and traditional activities. It’s a community approach through partnerships with local groups and concerned citizens. Nobody can do it all. But together, we can make a difference. It evolves through work with the communities, respects local priorities, and promotes local role models.

Inuvik is the newest Not Us community. Over the summer, we held a Not Us event at the regional justice conference in Fort McPherson. People from all eight Beaufort-Delta communities were there. We talked about drugs and what communities could do to support their own people. Sports groups in several communities have proudly worn Not Us gear to promote drug-free healthy lifestyles. And we’re continuing to support Hay River, our launch community. They have evening activities, drug-free-community signs, and partnerships to keep their program strong.

Mr. Speaker, we’ve also had interest from Colville Lake, Behchoko, Tuktoyaktuk, the francophone school board, Fort Smith, Tulita, Fort Providence, Lutselk’e and Yellowknife. We look forward to working with these communities and others who want to develop their own campaigns to deal with drugs. We’re partnering wherever it makes sense to support a consistent message: Not our territory.

This campaign is part of the Healthy Choices Framework, and partnerships have always been key to its success. Not Us can only work when local people decide it’s the right thing for them. We help with the issues that are important locally. In some places, that’s alcohol. In others, residents want to talk seriously about hard drugs like crystal meth, crack and ecstasy. Wherever we go, we work with families, communities and schools to improve the physical and mental well-being of our youth. We encourage people to find common-sense solutions that will work in the long term.

Masi, Mr. Speaker.

For more information, contact:

Press Secretary
Office of the Premier/Cabinet
Government of the Northwest Territories
Phone: (867) 669-2302