Today, Élisabeth Brière, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health and Member of Parliament for Sherbrooke, announced funding of nearly $200,000 for two research projects that will be led by researchers at Université de Sherbrooke. The projects will provide evidence to inform interventions to prevent serious harms related to alcohol use and support Canadians experiencing issues with alcohol use, which is the most commonly used substance in the country. While its consumption is legal and socially acceptable, alcohol use causes significant harm to the health and safety of Canadians and can aggravate societal problems such as homelessness.
Dr. Marie Claude Ouimet has received $100,000 to study how to prevent people who have been charged with impaired driving from repeating the offence. Dr. Ouimet will collaborate with health professionals and traffic safety experts to collect and analyze data on the policies and processes for managing cases of impaired driving in Quebec. The project will lead to new approaches for assessing offenders and targeting interventions to prevent them for driving impaired in the future. While the rate of impaired driving has declined significantly over the last few decades, it remains a major public safety issue in Canada.
Dr. Vincent Wagner has received $99,890 for a project that aims to improve access to treatment programs for people who are experiencing issues with alcohol use, aging, and homelessness. This research will guide the development of interventions to address the complex needs of this group who are at high risk of harm. Many Canadians experiencing issues with alcohol use also face challenges in other areas of their lives.
These projects are two of 20 new research projects that were recently funded through a partnership between the CIHR Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction and the Canadian Cancer Society. This research will generate data and evidence that will increase our knowledge base on the harms related to alcohol use and how to prevent and minimize them.