The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Canada's Minister of Health, and University of Windsor President Douglas Kneale, pose for a photo before entering a roundtable discussion about the opioid crisis with local first responders, health care providers anThe Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Canada's Minister of Health, and University of Windsor President Douglas Kneale, pose for a photo before entering a roundtable discussion about the opioid crisis with local first responders, health care providers and community partners.

Federal health minister hosts roundtable discussion at UWindsor

Canada’s Minister of Health was on campus Wednesday to lead a roundtable discussion on the impact substance use and addiction has on the region.

The Hon. Ginette Petitpas Taylor spent the afternoon at the University of Windsor’s Windsor Hall for the roundtable that included 18 participants comprising local first responders, health care providers and community partners.

President Douglas Kneale said the discussion was productive and provided constructive insight into the opioid epidemic and its wide-ranging consequences.

“This was a timely discussion, given the release of our first Student Mental Health Strategy for the University of Windsor,” Dr. Kneale said, who moderated the conservation.

“Our deepest social issues all intersect at some point, and hearing such diverse campus and community perspectives today confirms how substance abuse, mental health, and social wellness all converge.”

Among the participants were Windsor Essex County Health Unit’s acting Medical Officer of Health Wajid Ahmed, Windsor police Chief Al Frederick, Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens, UWindsor psychologist and clinical director Mohsan Beg and Hotel-Dieu Grace Hospital Chief of Staff Andrea Steen.

The roundtable was conducted in a closed-door setting because of the sensitive nature of the topic and the first-hand experiences being shared.

While on campus, Petitpas Taylor attended a presentation on Charlene Senn’s Enhanced Assess, Acknowledge, Act program which has been celebrated for its success as a sexual assault resistance program on university campuses across North America.


By Dylan Kristy