TORONTO – With the legalization of recreational cannabis coming to Canada in just under a week, Tweed, Uber, and MADD Canada launched a national awareness campaign focused on informing Canadians on the risks of driving high.
On Wednesday, October 10, the advocacy partnership launched with an event inviting media for an early look at the education-focused campaign, including its interactive features.
Today, the website launched. Called “Don’t Drive High“, it gives visitors 101 things to do instead of getting behind the wheel while baked.
What’s #1 on the list? “Ride with Uber instead”.
Obviously, as one of the partners to this campaign, Uber will be featured prominently and you’re even encouraged to click for a promo code, so that makes complete sense for Uber at least from a business and marketing point-of-view- except in BC, where ridehailing apps of any kind are still illegal. Vancouver even has the ignominious title of being the largest city in North America without Uber or Lyft, and you can thank the inaction of BC’s politicians and the deep pockets of the taxi lobby for that.
With other suggestions that include “Have a staring contest instead”, “Pop some bubble wrap instead”, “Read the dictionary instead”, and “Vacuum under the couch instead”, you get the feeling that the people at TWEED, Uber, and MADD Canada really know how to have a good time. But organizers are saying that it’s all in good fun.
As MADD Canada national president Patricia Hynes-Coates told CBC:
“It draws people in with 101 fun things to do instead of driving high. And then it reinforces the risks of driving and encourages people to choose a sober ride home.”
Some of the suggestions get a little out there and you can imagine things getting weird if you actually do them while super high such as #100. “Talk to your reflection instead” or #86. “Contemplate your existence instead”. If you’re the type to get a little paranoid when you’re stoned, maybe you want to avoid those ones.
Also, #10. “Call your grandparents instead” could be a very bad idea depending on your grandparents. If they know about cannabis and are cool with it then it’s all good but if you come from a more conservative (or immigrant) family where cannabis use is judged harshly, it could kick off a family emergency if they figure out you’re high (or you accidentally admit to it).
Tweed’s President and Co-CEO, Mark Zekulin, unveiled the campaign on Wednesday and media in attendance had the opportunity to discuss this new approach to informing Canadians about issues and perceptions around cannabis use and impaired driving.
Mr. Zekulin said:
“To bring it back to a single message that I hope you will take away what I’ve said, we are the biggest cannabis company in the world, we’re the best-known cannabis brand, working with respected partners, and we’re asking you: ‘please, do not drive high'”.
Featured image courtesy of Don’t Drive High.