Santé Canada is currently seeking a sub-contractor to implement a nation-wide program to raise awareness about the risks of vaping. In order for this program to work, the government is counting on prominent influencers on social media.
Web personalities are very popular with young people, and young people rarely miss an online celebrity’s publications. Consequently, young people are more likely to listen to cultural figures than to the government or health professionals.
One of the objectives is to contact the biggest influencers in Canada, i.e. those who have those most followers or subscribers on social media. Celebrity personalities have all of the necessary qualities to help young people recognize the potential risks of vaping.
Framing the use of the e-cigarette
This initiative comes one month after the adoption of a new law that regulates vaping products. Minors can no longer purchase vaping products, but manufactures are also now prohibited from creating flavours that might attract young people. From now on, influencers will have to play a major role in encouraging young people to use e-cigarettes in moderation.
Raising awareness largely falls on the shoulders of whichever subcontractor the government chooses. The subcontractor will be responsible for marketing, creating events on a national level, and implementing a national awareness program.
Although vaping is considered less harmful than traditional cigarettes, Santé Canada is worried that adolescents are becoming addicted. In fact, the government fears that vaping might lead to smoking.
The national awareness program will be targeting young people between 15 and 18 years old as well as non-smokers between 19 and 24 years old. The goal is to help them understand that vaping does not come without risks. The program will also provide tools for parents and educators who hope to start a dialogue about vaping with their children.
According to Santé Canada, the subcontractor will begin working by the fall.