As Islanders we all have a role to play in not only improving our own health but also promoting and supporting healthy families and communities.
Unfortunately statistics consistently show we are above the national average when it comes to unhealthy habits – we like to drink, smoke, and eat.
And we don’t take enough time to exercise or participate in activities to improve our mental health.
Madam Speaker, I believe Islanders want to – and can – change those statistics. We need to embrace a culture of wellness.
Government recognizes it has a role to play in supporting Islanders make healthy choices and improving their well-being.
Thanks to Go PEI, Islanders in all regions of our province are becoming more active.
At the same time, investments in Active Start are helping to teach our children the fundamentals of sport to foster a life-long love of physical activity.
By continuing to increase our focus on preventative measures, we can reduce the instances of illness and hospitalizations.
But we can’t do it alone.
That’s why today we are releasing a discussion paper, Towards the Culture of Wellness.
This discussion paper focuses on five areas: positive mental wellness, being active, living tobacco free, eating well, and using alcohol responsibly.
Each section includes some ideas on how we can make improvements in these areas.
Madam Speaker, we are also asking Islanders to give their feedback on these ideas, as well as tell us what government can do to support them improve their overall well-being.
I invite all Islanders to fill out the survey online at www.gov.pe.ca/beingwell.
The input of Islanders will help shape a provincial wellness strategy to be released later this year.
I encourage all Islanders to take some time to talk to their families and identify areas where they would like to make a change to improve their health.