As you have probably already heard, new and stricter-than-ever impaired driving laws are taking effect in Canada this week.
In short, the new impaired driving criminal code gives the police a lot more power. Officers can now give a breathalyser test to anyone they pull over, and they don't even need reasonable grounds to administer the test.
TL;DR A new impaired driving criminal code came into effect which gives police the right to administer a breathalyser test without having to prove reasonable "suspicion" that a driver is drunk. Many are outraged by this, claiming it's a violation of citizens' rights and gives police unchecked power.
This new law was passed by the federal government in hopes of reducing drunk driving and the number of deadly collisions caused by it.
Before this law, officers needed "reasonable suspicion" to administer a breathalyzer test. This suspicion could arise from anything that suggested a driver was drunk such as slurred speech or alcohol breath.
Now, however, officers no longer have to prove that suspicion. Some people are outraged by this; claiming it's a violation of citizens' rights.
In fact, this new law does technically violate the charter of rights.
Section 8 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms provides everyone in Canada with protection against unreasonable search and seizure.
Looking to a Reddit thread discussing the topic, here are are some of the major arguments and points that go against this new law.
So, apparently, drivers in Canada no longer have any constitutional rights... pretty amazing! https://t.co/qQ8tE7nWey— Glenn Letham (@gletham) December 18, 2018
So police in Canada can now pull you over without any reason, as long as they give you breathalyzer. How long before this is struck down by the courts? https://t.co/Oiv6BPmha3— devin (@dudeits_devin) December 18, 2018
So under new drunk driving laws, police can now demand a breathalyzer from anyone they pull over regardless of the reason they pulled a person over. Sounds like Canada is becoming a #policestate That has to be considered a violation of a person's rights. Or no?— I love Hitchcock as much as I used to hate him! (@Snideguy) December 18, 2018