DRUNK DRIVING DAZE
Federal Justice Minister Jody-Wilson-Raybould is urging her provincial counterparts to support lowering the legal blood-alcohol limit for drivers to .05 from .08. But an internal federal government study in 2010 warned that lowering the bar for drunk driving convictions could overwhelm the justice system. Courts, police services and jails could be pushed to the breaking point.
Canada’s impaired driving laws are among the strictest in the western world. A significant concern and risk in reducing the criminal limit below a point most Canadians would consider reasonable is that it would encourage contempt, disrespect and disdain for the law. Unquestionably, this would weaken the resolve of the criminal justice system (police, courts) to enforce the law. Frivolous criminalization will not protect the public.
When it comes to dealing with impaired driving, the current administrative and criminal sanctions in place in Canada provide a well thought-out mix of effectiveness, efficiency and severity. Let’s keep it that way! EMILE THERIEN, OTTAWA (Sobering thoughts, indeed.)