Drunk driving to be largely decriminalized in Alberta in 2018

Changes are coming to the way drunk drivers are policed and prosecuted in Alberta with the provincial government set to issue a directive to police that will largely decriminalize impaired driving, CBC News has learned.

Officers will be given wide discretion whether to criminally charge those who blow over the legal limit. But, for the most part, first time offenders will see roadside administrative sanctions rather than face criminal charges according to CBC sources.

  • simus1

    No doubt the vote whoring NDP attitude towards potheads will be even more lenient, if that is even possible. At least until the damaged and dead victims of the serial offenders start piling up and piss off voters.

    • I was wondering if this was a response to legalized pot.

      • Sounds like a great progressive idea.

        What could go wrong?

  • kkruger71

    WTF? is right. What’s the appeals process? Is there one and how would that even work? I just can’t see how this would work well. As much as I dislike things getting tied up in courts and find the lawyers and other representatives that specialize in these types of cases to be playing the system to get their clients off, skipping the court process entirely is not an acceptable option. Add this to the RIDE program and their equivalents being unlawful fishing expeditions.
    And in yet another example of an advocacy group gone crazy, it’s been years now where anything MADD supports I cast a wary eye on; victims of crime tend to push for the worst laws and rules.

  • Clink9

    They’re going for the anarchist vote now.


  • Dana Garcia

    Wait, I thought public safety was the top job of government.

    • Clausewitz

      They keep saying that, from a personal perspective I see very little evidence of it.

      • Dana Garcia

        Yeh, me too.

  • Thomas Henderson

    MADD will be mad.

    From the article: The changes follow an Alberta Court of Appeal decision in May that
    struck down existing drunk driving laws. The province’s top court found
    tying the suspension of a driver’s licence to the outcome of their court
    case was unconstitutional.

    Who will rid of us of these meddlesome magistrates? This is not rule of law; this is disavowal of law and the dereliction of authority.

  • Jay Currie

    If by “decriminalise” you mean getting rid of pesky things like the presumption of innocence and due process this is great news. The administrative state run wild.

  • Hard Little Machine

    Whether you embrace this or not you should be outraged that if your life was ruined last month now it would be a big nothing for the same infraction.

    • Clausewitz

      Equal enforcement of the law is a silly concept in Canada these days.

      • Hard Little Machine

        This is my primary objection to illegal aliens. Everyone who’s ever been on the receiving end of a bullshit pot bust and any other revenue based harassment from the cops, as a citizen, is in a worse place, societally than every single illegal alien from the perspective of signing a lease or getting a government job or getting a loan or a hundred other things.

  • deplorabledave

    The freedom to drive while under the influence is great until it’s your kid laying on the slab in the morgue.

    • dukestreet

      Or you have to spend the rest of your life caring for a family member or friend that gradually deteriorated over their life, so until they become so delicate that no one but you can safely care for them. It means you get very little time away for yourself and the quad gradually loses what capabilities they have and even more care is required.

  • Cat-astrophe


  • Fred C Dobbs

    That’ll be aimed at the stoner drivers.

  • moraywatson

    Excellent. How about we move towards a criminal justice system that punishes those who cause harm, or who conspire to cause harm. No harm, no conspiracy, no punishment. But if you cause harm and are found criminally responsible for doing so, then no excuses when it comes to sentencing.

  • Exile1981

    wow so the drunk drivers will not loose their licenses and be allowed to try to kill again.

  • dukestreet

    I have a family member who is the 24/7 attendant to a quadriplegic hit by a drunk driver when she had just graduated from high school. I can tell you that the consequences of his actions are changing for the worse all the time.

    To decriminalize drunk driving is an insult to all those and their families and friends who were killed and those who live with the results of their actions.

    I am appalled at the idea of this.
    The suffering is unending for the victims.

  • I’ll just leave this right here:

    “Their parents made it to hospital in time to say a final goodbye, but
    they were too late for Daniel, 9, who died three hours earlier.

    Outside the courthouse following the sentencing, Jennifer Neville-Lake showed a
    photo of the two children holding hands in their hospital beds.

    “That’s Milly and Harry. They joined their hands together. They pushed their
    beds together; I decided I had to turn the machines off so Milly’s heart
    wouldn’t explode. I couldn’t pick which baby to turn off the machines
    first,” she said, her voice cracking.

    “Edward and I crawled into bed with them,” she said. “We put our hands on top of theirs so that … just like we were with them when they were born, we were with both of them when they died. They died hugged by us in bed surrounded by all the
    family and friends that sang to them ’Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ as we
    turned off the machines.”


  • UCSPanther

    The only thing “progressive” about progressives, is how stupid they get.

    I hope whoever was behind this dumb idea gets into an accident caused by a drunk or a stoner who got behind a wheel…

  • Malcolm Y

    Not Canadian, but the first thing that popped into my mind was some powerful person/group/ideology must be going to benefit from this. I know in the US the first group that “made it legal” to randomly stop or set up checkpoints and “search” people without cause was MADD and nobody will challenge this. We used to believe living in a free society is living in a possibly more dangerous society.

  • CoolTolerance

    The legal limit is .05. This is equivalent to one small glass of wine while eating over a period of one hour. I just don’t see this as acceptable. How many of you drink two small glasses of wine while eating over a period of one hour? It doesn’t affect our cognitive or driving abilities.
    The MADD group now wants ZERO tolerance. These are lobbies gone overboard.
    However, cannabis is another story. Much more impairing.

    • just_one_Sewer Rat_guy

      And right now, the cops are judge, jury, and executioner. Constitutional rights of innocent until proven guilty were tossed out the window, and guilty until proven innocent on the spot replaced it.

      • CoolTolerance

        We have a new strain of police officers, the younger ones below 40 years of age. They think they’re Rambo, King of the Road. Not always honest.

  • clownloach

    No more vehicular jihad just d.u.i. ,nothing to worry about.