Environmental Public Health

Conditions in both the natural and built environments can affect people's ability to achieve and maintain good health. A healthy environment includes safe water and food supplies and properly designed, constructed and maintained housing and community facilities as well as suitable treatment and disposal of wastewater and solid waste. To maintain a healthy environment, it is also necessary to plan for and respond to emergencies and to work towards the prevention and control of communicable diseases.

First Nations Environmental Contaminants Program

What is the Environmental Public Health Program?

  • The Environmental Public Health Program in First Nations communities works to identify and prevent environmental public health risks that could adversely impact the health of community residents.
  • Programming includes public health inspections, monitoring environmental conditions such as drinking water quality, delivering training and raising awareness about potential environmental public health risks and the steps people can take to protect themselves and their families.
  • In support of Health Canada's mission to help the people of Canada maintain and improve their health, the Environmental Public Health Program provides services to First Nations communities south of 60 degrees.

North of 60 degrees, responsibility for environmental public health programming has been devolved to territorial governments or First Nations and Inuit control as part of land-claims settlements.

Commitment to First Nations

Health Canada's Environmental Public Health Program is committed to providing First Nations with a high-quality environmental public health program through:

  • Collaboration with First Nations to formulate Environmental Public Health Program activities;
  • Timely response to the environmental public health needs of communities;
  • Advocacy and expertise in environmental public health;
  • Support for the development of First Nations capacity in environmental public health;
  • Use of culturally appropriate education and promotion techniques;
  • Recognition that environmental public health is part of the holistic approach to wellness; and,
  • Respect of First Nations cultures and their special relationships with the environment

What information is available?

In this section, you will find information about Environmental Public Health Programming, including Drinking Water and Wastewater  and Healthy Community Environments. See the Environmental Public Health Division's website for information about how Health Canada 's Environmental Public Health programming in First Nations communities is structured and coordinated nationally.

You can also find a summary of information in the First Nations Environmental Public Health Program Booklet.

You can also find information on keeping your home enviromment safe in the Your Health at Home booklet.

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