Since Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) formed in 1980, they’ve supported victims of drunk drivers and fought to change driving under the influence (DUI) laws. With the MADD USA’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving, they’ve worked with lawmakers to require ignition interlock devices for all DUI offenders. North of the border, MADD Canada is doing it’s part to eliminate impaired driving and reduce impaired driving deaths in our country by asking for federal changes to impaired driving laws.
On the East coast, MADD has asked that Prince Edward Island require drivers with blood alcohol concentration of .05 to lose their license for 7 days and have their vehicles impounded for a week. Citing a 50% reduction in impaired driving deaths in British Columbia since license suspension and vehicle impounding began, MADD Canada hopes Prince Edward Island can see the same drop.
According to MADD, roadside checks are another area that needs improvement. At this time, the police can only ask for a person to submit to a breathalyzer if they are reasonably suspicious the person has been drinking. MADD would like Ottawa to impose a federal law requiring everyone to submit to mandatory alcohol screening when stopped at roadside checks.
Despite the need for further change across Canada, MADD has applauded recent changes to British Columbia and Saskatchewan’s impaired driving laws. Besides having their vehicle impounded and their license suspended, British Columbia law states that ignition interlock devices may be required for anyone convicted of impaired driving. Saskatchewan requires ignition interlock devices for one year upon first conviction and two years upon second conviction.
With MADD’s support, impaired driving laws are changing across the country. Time will tell if all provinces jump on board and adopt new laws, but in the meantime the drop in impaired driving deaths is encouraging news for the fight against drunk driving.