Canada plans to legalize the use of recreational marijuana next year, fulfilling a pledge from the elected Liberal government. The government has also pledged to install laws, technology, training and education to protect Canadians from the effects of drug-impaired drivers. The law to improve DUI legislation (OWI in Canada) is Bill C-46, scheduled for committee hearings in September, 2017.
Bill C-46 contains several features that will improve OWI management, including the use of Drug Recognition Experts, oral fluid testing, and enabling legislation.
Unfortunately, the bill makes the common mistake of proposing that impairment-based blood per se limits for a variety of drugs and drug classes be established by the Governor in Council. The Task Force created to develop the legalization structure recommended graduated sanctions such as license revocation for low levels of THC in blood, and criminal prosecution for higher levels. Further committee guidance has suggested 2-5 ng/ml for administrative action and 5ng/ml and above for possible criminal action.
DUID Victim Voices has submitted a Brief in opposition to C-46 to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, copying Provincial and Territory Premiers and members of Parliament, pointing out that C-46 is fundamentally flawed and should be replaced with a bill that relies upon Tandem per se.
We issued a press release in cooperation with SAM Canada on our brief that we hope will spread the word widely.