To quote a child rearing expert…..

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“Never threaten a child with a punishment that you cannot or are not willing to follow through on.” – Barbara Coloroso (paraphrase)

“The most recent cycle of canadian legislative reform has focused on increasing sanction, particularly for repeat offenders.  Federal Criminal Code amendments in 1999 increased the minimum fines and driving prohibitions for the three most common offences –impaired driving, driving with a blood alcohol level (BAL) above 0.08%, and failing to provide breath or blood samples.  Significant changes have also occurred at the provincial level. For example, Ontario introduced legislation which, when fully implemented will impose indefinite licence suspensions on those convicted of three federal drinking and driving offences within 10 years, and British Columbia has followed suit.” 1

“Given the low percentage of guilty dispositions and the high percentage of stays and withdrawals, it appears that many suspects initially charged with impaired driving causing death or bodily harm were able to get these charges withdrawn in exchange for a guilty plea to impaired driving — a lesser offence.” 1

I live in Ontario and I have not heard of anyone losing their licence “indefinitely”.  I can give you lots of examples of multiple offenders still driving with a licence though.  Unfortunately, I have learned that our case was more normal than not in Ontario.  Roughly 60-70% (depending on sources) of impaired driving causing death charges in Ontario are withdrawn by the Crown for a guilty plea to Over.08.

So, I wonder what the politicians would say to me fighting, not for stronger laws and enforcement, but for legislating what they are doing now – just putting an honest portrayal of what they are willing to so.  Quit lying to us and just tell us the truth – put it into print.  I wonder if any of them would allow it to go on the books that if you kill someone while driving drunk that you will not go to jail but will only lose your licence for 1 year.

Do you think they’d go for that instead?


(1) quotes taken from “Understanding drinking and driving reforms: a profile of Ontario statistics” by Carroll and Solomon


2 Responses to To quote a child rearing expert…..

  1. Thats disgusting i wasnt aware of any of this thank you. My daughter was hit by a drunk driver when she was just 18yrs old …..she lived but is a quadraplegic as a result. he got 18 months at a 8 bed club med treatment facility and his licence suspended for 10 yrs. He drove to and from the court house for every appearance and when we asked the crown to do something they said tell the RCMP when we did they just looked at us shrugged their shoulders and said….”what do ya want US to do about it”. it was his 4th conviction. Ty again for the info i will make sure and spread this message!!! <3

  2. Thank you for commenting Patricia and for offering to spread the word about The Empty Shoes Project. People just don’t grasp the devastation that a crash with a drunk driver amounts to. It’s not usually whiplash and those of us that survive end up with life long health issues. The sad thing is that most Canadians think that the system works the way that they think it should work. I know that I was shocked and more than a little disheartened by the whole process. In response to what the RCMP said to you, I will give you another side of the police. I was asked by a police officer what I wanted them to do about drunk drivers (and this was actually asked in the spirit of support). I told him to keep arresting the drunk drivers even though I know that it is incredibly frustrating for them to keep arresting the same people over and over and over again only to have the wheels fall off in the courts. Because they are the ones that see the carnage first hand, most of them are as disgusted and disheartened by the courts as we are. I will keep digging though.

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