MADD Canada

MADD Canada

January 08, 2007 09:04 ET

Proposed Nova Scotia Impaired Driving Legislation ‘Excellent’: MADD

“We would like to see these measures become law in this Session of Parliament. We know this package will save lives and reduce the incidents of impaired driving in Nova Scotia.”

Attention: News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor, Transportation Editor HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA--(CCNMatthews - Jan. 8, 2007) - Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Canada praised Nova Scotia legislators today for their efforts in proposing new impaired driving measures that will ensure the Province's roads are safer. Representatives from MADD Canada's Nova Scotia Chapters joined with MLA Kevin Deveaux to call on the Government to quickly pass a package of impaired driving laws announced today by the N.D.P.

The proposed new impaired driving laws include an enhanced graduated licence program with a zero-BAC limit for the first five years of driving, as well as a zero-BAC limit for all supervising drivers; and, an increase from the current 24-hour to a 7-day administrative licence suspension for drivers who register 0.05% BAC, or over, on a breathalyzer test.

"We would like to see these measures become law in this Session of Parliament," says Susan MacAskill, Windsor resident and former National President of MADD Canada. "The initiatives come directly from MADD Canada's recommendations to this Government and they are excellent measures that are proven effective. We know this package will save lives and reduce the incidents of impaired driving in Nova Scotia."

Mrs. MacAskill explains that MADD Canada has had numerous meetings with MLAs on impaired driving legislative recommendations from the organization's Rating the Provinces: The 2006 Report Card and its youth study, Opportunities for Progress. "Our recommendations are made based on the best empirical evidence and on current international experience in reducing impaired driving fatalities and injuries. We are very encouraged that Nova Scotia legislators are taking up our recommendations and proposing more effective laws."

On the issue of MADD Canada's endorsement of the N.D.P. impaired driving package, Mrs. MacAskill was clear and emphatic. "Impaired driving is a non-partisan issue and, across the country, MADD Canada representatives work with all political stripes to achieve safer roads for Canadians. In this Province, we have held meetings and exchanged information with MLAs from all Parties and we have an on-going dialogue with government officials. So, whether it is a Government initiative or, in this case a N.D.P. initiative, MADD Canada is just happy to see new, effective legislation being introduced and passed."

"MADD Canada was recently in Manitoba to praise that Government on enacting similar initiatives with respect to their graduated licence program." Mrs. MacAskill adds, "We are working with governments to introduce effective and proven impaired driving legislation and we are encouraging all provincial governments to take a look at what is being done in Canadian jurisdictions and around the world to save lives."

"The answer to safer roads can be found in the research and findings of the document Rating the Provinces," says Mrs. MacAskill.

MADD Canada released its comprehensive study of provincial and territorial impaired driving legislation on October 19, 2006. Rating the Provinces: The 2006 Report Card presents five core elements as being essential in provincial and territorial efforts to reduce impaired driving:

-- a comprehensive graduated licensing program for all new drivers, including express police powers to enforce it;
-- a .00% BAC limit for all drivers under 21 or with less than five years driving experience;
-- express police powers to stop vehicles, establish sobriety checkpoints, and demand field sobriety testing from suspected alcohol and/or drug impaired drivers;
-- strengthening the existing short-term roadside licence suspension programs for drivers with BACs of .05% or higher, to include a 7-14 day licence suspension, a $150-$300 licence reinstatement fee, the recording of the suspension on the driver's record, and mandatory remedial measures for repeat violations; and
-- mandatory alcohol interlock, vehicle impoundment and forfeiture, and remedial programs.

Manitoba scored the highest grade in the study with an A -. At the time of the study's release, MADD Canada lauded Manitoba for its introduction of new legislative reforms including a five-year, zero-BAC for new drivers.

Full details of the comprehensive study and its recommendations, including a podcast interview with study co-author Professor Robert Solomon, can be found on www.madd.ca. Visit: http://www.madd.ca/english/research/rtp.html

/For further information: www.madd.ca
Professor Robert Solomon, MADD Canada Legal Affairs Director (and co-author of Rating the Provinces: The 2006 Report Card) @ (519) 661-3603 / IN: JUSTICE, POLITICS, TRANSPORT

Contact Information

  • Susan MacAskill, Atlantic Region Manager
    Primary Phone: 866-798-6233