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Vanessa's Law

The health and safety of Canadian is a top priority of our government.  This includes keeping harmful medicine away from our children.  Vanessa’s Law is a new Private Members bill brough forth by conservative MP Terrance Young that will help identify potentially dangerous drugs and ensure the quick recall of unsafe drugs. 

The Protecting Canadians from Unsafe Drugs Act (Vanessa’s Law) is named after Vanessa Young the daughter of MP Terrance Young, who tragically died of a heart attack  while on a  prescription drug that later was deemed not safe and removed from the market.

Vanessa’s Law will protect Canadian families and children from unsafe medicine by enabling the Government to:

  • Require mandatory adverse drug reaction reporting;
  • Recall unsafe products;
  • Impose tough new penalties for unsafe products, including jail time and new fines of up to $5 million per day instead of the current $5,000;
  • Provide the courts with discretion to impose even stronger fines if violations were caused intentionally;
  • Compel drug companies to revise labels to clearly reflect health risk information, including updates for health warnings for children; and
  • Compel drug companies to do further testing on a product, including when issues are identified with certain at-risk populations such as children.

“It is difficult to overstate the impact this bill will have for Canadians who take prescription and over the counter drugs,” said MP Terence Young. “It represents a quantum leap forward in protecting vulnerable patients and reducing serious adverse drug reactions. It is absolutely necessary to reduce deaths and injuries caused by adverse drug reactions, seventy percent of which are preventable, and will serve Canadians extremely well.”

On December 6, 2013, the Government of Canada introduced the Protecting Canadians from Unsafe Drugs Act (Vanessa’s Law) to help better identify potentially dangerous drugs and ensure the quick recall of unsafe drugs.  This legislation builds on our existing efforts to ensure that drug labels and safety information are easier to read and understand.

The Act would apply to prescription and over-the-counter drugs, vaccines, gene therapies and medical devices. 


Hon. Peter Kent, P.C., MP