Drug Breathalyser in The Works - Easter 

Drug Breathalyser in The Works - Easter 
Posted by CN Staff on August 25, 2003 at 07:26:11 PT
By Amy Pugsley Fraser, Staff Reporter
Source: Halifax Herald 
The federal government is pursuing development of a breathalyser for illegal drugs, the Solicitor General told a national conference in Halifax on Sunday evening. The initiative goes hand in hand with the government's upcoming marijuana bill, Wayne Easter told a group gathered for opening ceremonies at a meeting of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police. 
There is not yet a reliable, non-intrusive roadside method to test drivers for drugs as there is for alcohol. "The Mothers Against Drunk Driving have complained consistently - and that's their right - about there not being a (drug) breathalyser in place," Mr. Easter said. The government's upcoming marijuana bill would make possession of up to 15 grams of pot a minor offence that would carry a fine but no criminal record. With the new legislation, $910,000 would be set aside for public education, better drug-detection training for officers, and research and development, the Malpeque MP said during his 25-minute speech. Part of that money would go toward developing a special drug breathalyser for use in roadside stops. Mr. Easter, a P.E.I. farmer before he was elected to Parliament in 1993, assured the almost 800 gathered under a huge canvas tent on the Halifax waterfront that such initiatives show that Ottawa is treating marijuana seriously. "We don't want our kids smoking marijuana," he said. "We've had an anti-smoking campaign in terms of tobacco, and the strategy here is to use funding to help." The former Liberal backbencher, who replaced fellow Islander Lawrence MacAuley as Solicitor General last October, said the government is relying on the courts to follow along with its national drug strategy. "We expect the courts to impose those penalties because they must if we are to deal with those marijuana grow operations in a big and effective way." Mr. Easter also said police have a big part to play. "We have to recognize that, in Canada, the enforcement in terms of marijuana laws across the country is not uniform, and we're hopeful that through this bill . . . we'll bring some uniformity and consistency for laws across the country and we hope that the law enforcement community will act on those laws." The MP congratulated the chiefs of police - and their organizations - for their "pretty darn good" work and said Canadians should be proud of their worldwide reputation for showing police officers respect and trust. The government is keen to work with police organizations across the country on key issues such as organized crime, border enforcement, citizen security, Internet child pornography and the new threat of identity theft. "We have to bring all parts of the justice system into a united front to protect public safety," Mr. Easter said. The Solicitor General's office is in charge of the RCMP, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, the Correctional Service of Canada and the National Parole Board. Note: Marijuana law makes device necessary, says Solicitor General.Source: Halifax Herald (CN NS)Author: Amy Pugsley Fraser, Staff ReporterPublished: Monday, August 25, 2003Copyright: 2003 The Halifax Herald LimitedContact: letters herald.ns.caWebsite: Articles & Web Site:Cannabis News Canadian Links Pot Power To Police: MADD Laws Ban Possession of Marijuana
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Comment #7 posted by cloud7 on August 26, 2003 at 08:15:07 PT
That's interesting information, that was the type of test I was referring to - not a breathalyzer for only illegal drugs. It still seems like it would be possible for a field sobriety test to be developed that would be more accurate in determining impairment, but their real goal is not to remove all the people who are unfit to drive off the road - they just want to persecute the minority of society who use drugs not sanctioned by the state, regardless of whether they are impaired or a "danger to society."
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Comment #6 posted by Petard on August 25, 2003 at 18:28:40 PT
Already have impairment test
It's called the field sobriety test, the walk a straight line, stand on one foot, touch your nose thingy. The only problem with that is it is based on the AVERAGE. That's right, already 1/2 the population would flunk it cold sober, unimpaired whatsoever. If I remember correctly, a decade or more ago the US Supreme Court ruled that a field sobiety test alone does NOT constitute impairment, for the very reason that it is based on average, meaning 1/2 pass, 1/2 fail, all the time every time. After all, how many elderly drivers could do that stuff, how many handicapped persons could pass it? Think the older man in Cali that plowed into the people at the market killing several could? But that old fella's not under indictment for being impaired. In reality they just want another means of sampling and categorizing and cataloging people into their databases. More databases equals more ability to generate false and misleading stats as well as make a buck selling the data.
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Comment #5 posted by JHarshaw on August 25, 2003 at 18:09:06 PT
Impaired driving
In my mind this is almost a moot point since an Ontario court has already ruled in one case that a driver, (who has a Health Canada exemption,) that was pulled over by the Police while still puffing on a doobie was not impaired.So, we shall see where this goes.peace and pot
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Comment #4 posted by RasAric on August 25, 2003 at 17:08:21 PT:
breath test
Sounds Like Bush is making some strong waves in Canada. We'll see the drug breath test here in the USA soon enough (Actually I thought it would be implemented here first). Sorry B.C. et al. This is the Main reason our American kids are so damn rude and obnoxious. Yours will be too once the iron fist is thoroughly ground into their spine.America is a wonderful country (with some great homegrown herb),but, it's under the control of some real PIGS. 
U.S. citizens: tell your friends about this link :
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Comment #3 posted by Sam Adams on August 25, 2003 at 16:09:43 PT
another boondoggle
You guys make good points, but don't forget what's really happening here.Do you really think it's possible to make a breathalyzer that tests for ALL illegal drugs, and ONLY illegal drugs, and will not be fooled by any prescription drugs? The answer to that question is IRRELEVANT. What does matter is that every police dept. in Canada will be able to get more funding to buy more machines, send every cop to a training program (probably out of town and counted as OT), and the federal governement can raise taxes some more to hire staff to plan the program, select a manufacturer (who will be an MP's brother-in-law), etc., etc, etc. And if there's any resistance? Just get the media to repeatedly broadcast video of someone being crushed by a tripping truck driver, with plenty of footage of little girls crying. No problemo, the people will vote to send their own kids to prison directly, if necessary.
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Comment #2 posted by cloud7 on August 25, 2003 at 14:44:18 PT
Now that pot smokers and drunks will face significant penalties, all we have left to worry about are heroin, crack, acid, prescription pill and OTC medication users on the road. A better solution, which has no doubt been posted before, is to test for IMPAIRMENT. Im sure a standardized test could be developed for much cheaper than this new drugalizer, oops lets be honest since it only tests for one, marijuanalizer. And this test would remove more unsafe drivers from the road than the marijuanalizer ever will.On a positive note, does any one else find it curious that this is being pushed hard to be developed so quickly? Like, maybe the laws are about to crumble, they know it's going to be legal, and their preparing for the nannies' cries of "stoned drivers barrelling down the highway in 2000 lb projectiles." *fingers crossed*
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Comment #1 posted by Petard on August 25, 2003 at 10:12:13 PT
Don't forget
"We don't want our kids smoking marijuana" and we're damn well ready to throw yours in jail to prevent it!!!, he muttered under his breath. We'll start breath testing everyone we stop for a routine traffic violation cuz if we shine a flashlight in their eyes long enough and bright enough it'll constrict their iris and make their eyes red giving us probable cause. We won't stop till everyone has a criminal record and is in our database and under the power and control of the police. Welcome to the 21st Century. 
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