Episode 4 of High Tea features Dr. Rebecca Haines-Saah, who you may remember as an original Degrassi member, Kathleen Mead.
As a youth substance researcher, Jenna talks to Rebecca about her shift from Canadian television to Canadian drug policy. Dr. Haines-Saah is now an Assistant Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine at the University of Calgary, and a leading advocate for youth inclusion in sensible cannabis education.
In the context of upcoming cannabis legalization in Canada, we unpack what it means to protect young people using a ‘public health’ lens, and why this includes more than just trying to restrict youth use.
Drawing on her qualitative research with young people about cannabis, as well as her personal experience as a parent, Dr. Saah offers some important tips about how to approach the cannabis conversation with young people, and why the kids will be alright in the context of legalization.
Episodes feature key players in cannabis culture, business, and policy who are committed to dispelling myths around what we know and what we still need to find out.
Dr. Jenna Valleriani is a researcher and writer, and a new resident of Vancouver. She spends her days as a postdoctoral fellow in Vancouver and Strategic Advisor for Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy (CSSDP).
Valleriani has been researching cannabis markets in Canada for the past six years, offering a diverse perspective on the emerging cannabis industry. She has led many youth and cannabis legalization engagement efforts with CSSDP, including a youth roundtable and submission to the federal government’s Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation, and creating the Sensible Youth Cannabis Education Toolkit. She is set to appear before the Senate this month.
Currently, Valleriani sits on the advisory board of the National Institute for Cannabis Health and Education (NICHE) and is a board member at Breaking the Stigma (BTS). She was previously the Vice Chair of Women Grow Toronto. Her public commentary on cannabis policy has been featured in other national outlets, including the Globe and Mail, Ottawa Citizen, and CBC’s Power and Politics.