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September 8, 2005
For immediate release

PEI Joins the World in Proclaiming Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Awareness Day

Health and Social Services

The PEI Reproductive Care Program (RCP) joins with the Aboriginal Women’s Association, Women’s Addictions Services and other communities across Canada and the world in support of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Awareness Day, September 9 at 9:09 a.m.

“On the ninth minute of the ninth hour of the ninth month, we would like to remind the community that the safest choice is to avoid drinking alcohol during the nine months of pregnancy,” says Diane Boswall, RCP Coordinator. “Because there is no known safe amount of alcohol, the safest choice is to not drink at all during pregnancy.”

FASD is an umbrella term describing the range of effects that can occur in an individual whose mother drank alcohol during pregnancy. These may include physical, mental, behavioral, and/or learning disabilities with possible lifelong implications.

In Canada, at least one child is born with FASD every day. In some communities FASD affects more than three in 1,000 babies. It is a leading cause of mental handicaps in children and has the largest incidence of any major birth defect in Canada. The effects are life-long.

While not curable, FASD is preventable. The PEI Reproductive Care Program urges all community members to support FASD prevention. Working together, communities can prevent FASD by supporting pregnant women and their partners to avoid alcohol during pregnancy.

KIDSWEST, 555 Main Street, Alberton, is hosting an awareness walk at 11 a.m.

September 9. The walk will be followed by a lunch-and-learn session where FASD awareness resources will be available. Further information is available by contacting Karen MacCarville or Colleen Parker at 853-4066.

International FASD Awareness Day originated on FASLINK (, an international FAS Listserv, in 1999. In 2000, events were held across Canada and the U.S., Germany, England, Scotland South Africa, New Zealand, and Costa Rico. International FASD Awareness Day was founded by Bonnie Buxton and Brian Philcox of FASworld and Teresa Kellerman of Fasstar.

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For more information contact:

Diane Boswall at 368-4952, e-mail

Eileen Conway-Martin at 831-3059, e-mail

Sandra MacNevin at 569-0519, e-mail

Visit our web site at

Media Contact: Darlene Gillis
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