MADD Canada

MADD Canada

March 21, 2007 12:36 ET

Canadian receives coveted Widmark Award for impaired driving work

MADD Canada’s Legal Policy Director and University of Western Ontario Law Professor receives international recognition for his life's research and work fighting impaired driving in Canada

Attention: Health/Medical Editor, News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor OAKVILLE, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - March 21, 2007) - Professor Robert Solomon has been awarded the Widmark Award, the highest honour that the International Council on Alcohol, Drugs and Traffic Safety (ICADTS) can confer on an individual. This award is presented for an outstanding, sustained and meritorious contribution to the advancement of science and research in areas relating to alcohol, drug and traffic safety.

Professor Solomon is awarded this prestigious recognition for his life's work, including the significant legal research and advocacy role he plays with Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Canada.

"Robert has been Canada's pre-eminent legal scholar in the field of substance abuse and impaired driving law and policy since the 1980's," says Andrew Murie, MADD Canada's Chief Executive Officer. "He has been a tireless public advocate for legislative reforms to reduce alcohol-related deaths and injuries in our country, particularly among young people."

"Robert's contributions to MADD Canada, as a researcher, educator and public advocate are immeasurable," says Mr. Murie.

Professor Solomon co-authored MADD Canada's federal legislative reform agenda of 2000, Taking Back our Roads, and has written numerous articles on the traffic safety benefits of a federal Criminal Code 0.05% blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for driving.

Professor Solomon was also lead author for MADD Canada's Rating the Provinces and Territories initiatives in 2000, 2003 and 2006. Most recently, he co-authored Youth and Impaired Driving in Canada: Opportunities for Progress. These documents present a comparative analysis of impaired driving legislation across all jurisdictions in Canada and provide a "best practices" blueprint for more effective impaired driving laws.

"Tangible provincial legislative improvements have been made over the years, in part because of the report cards and legislative reform agendas found with the Rating the Provinces documents," says Mr. Murie. "MADD Canada is proud to have played a role in the introduction of enhanced graduated licencing programs, alcohol interlocks, vehicle impoundment, and assessment and treatment programs."

In his professional career, Professor Solomon has served as a leading member of the Faculty of Law at the University of Western Ontario for 35 years. He is one of Canada's most productive and innovative scholars in the substance abuse field. He has been a champion of cannabis law reform for almost 35 years, and was an early developer of comprehensive alcohol and drug policies for secondary schools. Professor Solomon wrote the first Canadian review article on alcohol-related civil liability and, since, has played a leadership role in the development of server and manager training programs across Canada. He continues today to serve MADD Canada as Director of Legal Policy.

The Widmark Award was established in 1965 in honour of Professor Erik M.P. Widmark (1889 - 1945) of the University of Lund in western Sweden. Professor Widmark's comprehensive research work during the first half of the Twentieth Century touched on all the aspects of the pharmacology of alcohol. He was among the first researchers to study in a systematic way the absorption, distribution, and elimination of ethanol in the body, which paved the way for traffic safety legislation involving blood alcohol concentration limits.

The Widmark Award was first presented in 1965. Professor Robert Solomon is one of 27 individuals in the world to be so honoured. The presentation of the award will take place in August in Seattle, USA, the host City of the 2007 ICADTS conference (visit
/For further information:
Professor Robert Solomon, MADD Canada's Legal Director (519) 661-3603/ IN: HEALTH, INTERNATIONAL, POLITICS, SOCIAL

Contact Information

  • Andrew Murie, Chief Executive Officer
    Primary Phone: 800-665-6233 ext. 224