CAPSA offers educational opportunities to engage in lifelong learning through training on the topic of substance use health, stigma, person-first language, and allyship. Stigma and judgement-free language about substance use health must become a priority that moves us away from presumptions of disorders and bad/harmful actions.



CAPSA has developed effective, impactful workshops on substance use health, stigma awareness and person-first language to reduce stigma and increase wellness.

Substance Use Health, Stigma and Person First Language Training

Stigma Ends With Me: Core Principles

The first is a one-to-two-hour session which aims to equip participants, using evidence-based approaches, with increased awareness, knowledge and skills to communicate effectively on the topic of substance use, understand the impact of stigma on a person’s wellness, and learn a new non-stigmatizing language to use, when talking about people who use substances and/or have a substance use disorder.

Stigma Ends With Me: Train-the-Trainer

The second version consists of two sessions (Session A and Session B), each about two to three hours in length, using a “train-the-trainer” approach and is typically delivered to health professionals who will in turn transfer the knowledge to other health care workers and community members. These sessions can be delivered in one day, or can be divided over two days.

Session A

Session A focuses on knowledge and education on the topic of substance use disorder, the neuroscience behind substance use and substance use disorder, the different types of stigma associated with substance use disorder, and how stigma impacts those with living experience of a substance use disorder.

Session B

Session B focuses on activating that knowledge and the roles and responsibilities of participants upon completion of the training.

All sessions are interactive where participants are welcome to engage, exchange and enquire in a discussion regarding the aforementioned topics.

Training Outcomes

Through this training, participants are equipped to become trained communicators

Increasing their knowledge and understanding of stigma related to substance use and how language can help to change attitudes and behaviours that contribute to ongoing stigma in our society;

Supporting their community to promote positive interactions, language, and practices to remove barriers to accessing health care;

Developing the skills to communicate the ideas and concepts learned in the session effectively; and

Improving health outcomes for those living with substance use disorder.


"What a powerful presentation. Brought me close to tears a few times! Thank You for producing such an eye-opening training session! I'll be walking away with a different point of view."
- RR

"I want to thank you/CAPSA for tonight's presentation - it helped me understand how important harm reduction approaches are and how inequitable access to care is."
– GS 

"This was extremely informative 🙂 The personal touch you put to it was so appreciated. Thank you!"

What People Are Saying About CAPSA


100% of respondents agreed they are aware of how language impacts people with lived and living experience after receiving CAPSA's Stigma Training.


84% of respondents agreed they are knowledgeable of the different types of stigma associated with substance use disorders after receiving CAPSA's Stigma Training.


91% of respondents agreed they are knowledgeable of the barriers caused by stigma within a health care setting after receiving CAPSA's Stigma Training.


88% of respondents agreed they are confident using person-first language among their family and friends after receiving CAPSA's Stigma Training.

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