Oct 10, 2012 - ALBERTA WOMAN ADVOCATING FOR STRICTER IMPAIRED DRIVER PENALTIES

A petition calling for minimum sentencing for impaired drivers has made its way to Alberta.


It was created in British Columbia by a mother who lost her daughter because of an alleged impaired driver. Now, a Leduc mother, whose son and his two friends were also killed by an alleged drunk driver last year near Beaumont, is trying to keep the 'Families for Justice' petition alive not only in Alberta, but also spread it to the rest of Canada.

"What we really are fighting for is minimum sentencing," Sheri Arsenault explains, adding that she believes the majority of Canadians would agree with her that the current penalties for impaired drivers are 'a joke.'

"Right now there's only a maximum. They can give 10, 20, 30 years or life for this crime, but no judge ever has."

Arsenault says that she would like to see a minimum sentence for this crime of at least 5 years.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving is also in support of changes to sentencing, but the organization prefers to push for longer sentences.

"Our concern with a minimum sentence is in the event that they're set too low, now we're going to see lower sentencing for impaired driving rather than those harsher sentences to reflect the seriousness of the crime," says MADD's Layla Moulder.

"But at the end of the day, whether it's a minimum sentence or a maximum, we're both working towards the same goal of reducing impaired driving."

On Wednesday, Arsenault spoke with Edmonton area MP James Rajotte, who is willing to take her concerns to Parliament with a private member's bill. She hopes other MPs across the country will follow suit.

"Because it's a Canada problem. It's not just Leduc, or Beaumont or Edmonton or Alberta. It's a Canada wide problem."

So far, the Leduc mother has gathered more than 1,000 signatures. You can view the petition here, or the "Families for Justice" Facebook page for more information.

 

Source: Global TV Edmonton

 

Last updated on: 2012-10-10 | Link to this post