Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction

National Addictions Awareness Week 

National Addictions Awareness Week (NAAW) highlights solutions to help address the harms related to alcohol and other drugs. It provides an opportunity for people in Canada to learn more about the causes and prevention of harms, talk about treatment and recovery, and advance solutions for change.

In 2023, NAAW is Nov. 19 to 25. It happens with our biennial Issues of Substance conference. The conference at the Vancouver Convention Centre.

Both NAAW and the conference will use the theme of Inspiration, Innovation and Inclusion.

Substance use is a complex and far-reaching issue. It is associated with a staggering health impact and cost to society. In 2017, substance use in Canada cost almost $46 billion. It led to more than 275,000 hospitalizations and contributed to the loss of nearly 75,000 lives.

The COVID-19 pandemic made an already complicated substance use landscape even more complex. The mental health and well-being of people living in Canada were significantly impacted. The inequities that exist in our country were exacerbated.

CCSA believes Inspiration, Innovation and Inclusion are the key ingredients for a healthier Canadian society, where evidence transforms approaches to substance use health.

We have learned what is possible if we all work together. It takes a wide range of perspectives and collective efforts to drive needed change. By participating in NAAW and the conference, you can share novel, grassroots ideas that can produce significant change.

We will release more details about NAAW 2023 this summer.

Stay tuned!


CCSA understands that each of our partners and communities of people who use drugs have their own experiences, perspectives and preferred language. We appreciate that the term “addiction” can be stigmatizing for some communities and an important part of the conversation for others. Seeking to raise awareness about substance use health, addictions and people who use drugs is an important goal we share as we seek to improve health and well-being.

The discussion around NAAW can be emotionally difficult. We encourage people to reach out for help or get support in these sometimes-difficult conversations. Please continue to send us feedback as we strive to be better partners.

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