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Province Amends Program that Helps Prevent Impaired Driving

Nova Scotia is updating Alcohol Ignition Interlock program regulations to formalize practices and reflect recent Criminal Code changes.

The program, which came into effect in 2008, allows law enforcement and justice officials to better monitor those who have been convicted of impaired driving.

Nearly 2,000 participants have completed the program.

“The Alcohol Ignition Interlock Program has been sending a strong message that drinking and driving is not tolerated,” said Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations Minister Mark Furey. “This proven technology is helping to keep our communities safe by preventing repeat drinking and driving offences.”

Amendments to the regulations include:
— allowing people to move outside Nova Scotia and be covered by programs in other participating provinces
— allowing people to apply for a temporary leave from the program, because of financial pressures, medical issues or other circumstances, without having to restart their minimum
— increasing the authorized number of convictions in the past 10 years to reflect the recent Criminal Code change, which affects the wait time to enroll in the program

For many convicted of impaired driving, participating in the program is the only way to regain driving privileges.

Under this program, anyone convicted of an alcohol-related offence is required to take an education program and assessment with Addiction Services. Based on the assessment, Addiction Services will recommend to the Registry of Motor Vehicles if the person should be accepted. If accepted, participants are required to attend regular sessions with Addiction Services.

The Alcohol Ignition Interlock Handbook, which provides full program details, is available at www.interlock.gov.ns.ca .

Source: Release

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