pei-si-olivecrane

Olive Crane promised a new drug treatment facility and to revive old drug education programs in schools. (CBC)

Progressive Conservative Party Leader Olive Crane promised her party would help young people with addictions and their families in Summerside Friday.

Crane was flanked by Shirley Anne Cameron, candidate for Summerside - Wilmot, and Myles MacKinnon, candidate for Charlottetown - Victoria Park, both experienced in working with people with addictions.

Crane said her party, if elected, would establish a 24-hour youth residential care facility and addictions education program.

She estimated that the cost of restoring school-based educational programs like the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program, or DARE, in which police officers are paid to talk to children about the dangers of drugs, and peer-based programs, would cost $200,000.

MacKinnon said that it is the provincial government's job to show kids it cares for their welfare.

"It's a priority and it's a matter of sitting down and realizing that this has to be at the forefront, for us to invest in our youth and show them that we care and give them a future," he said.

Cameron said that too often society turns a blind eye to drug abuse.

"It's an insidious evil thing that we really need to address. We tent to bury our heads in the sand about it because it's an ugly issue," she said.

"But I think that it's time that we really address it. And a full-service 24-hour treatment centre for our youth on Prince Edward Island is only going to help matters," said Cameron.

None of the three candidates provided a cost estimate for a treatment facility.