EDMONTON, Nov. 28, 2011 /CNW/ - As of this morning, the Canadian
Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA) has received more than
2,000 petitions from Alberta business owners, their employees and
customers who are concerned that Bill 26, the province's new drinking
and driving legislation, targets the wrong people. The petitions have
also been sent to Premier Redford and Transportation Minister Danyluk.
"CRFA fully supports tougher penalties for drivers with a blood alcohol
content (BAC) above .08, as well as graduated licensing," says Garth
Whyte, CRFA's President and CEO. "What we don't support are the
stricter penalties for drivers with a BAC from .05 - .08. This piece of
the legislation affects responsible drivers who are not legally
impaired, and is unnecessarily confusing and intimidating to ordinary
CRFA members are concerned the tougher penalties for drivers with a BAC
between .05 and .08 will unintentionally hurt the restaurant industry
and responsible Albertans, as is the case in British Columbia. When
stricter laws were introduced in B.C., a CRFA survey found sales at
licensed restaurants and bars fell 21 per cent and jobs were lost.
"We need solutions that get drunk drivers off the roads without
harassing the average Albertan," says Whyte. "If the petitions flooding
our office are any indication, this is what Albertans want too.
Government should focus its resources on those drivers who are well
over the legal limit and cause most alcohol-related accidents, instead
of going after law-abiding citizens who drink responsibly."
Alberta accident statistics show that impaired drivers who are over the
legal limit of .08 BAC are responsible for 86 per cent of
alcohol-related accidents and fatalities. Two-thirds of alcohol-related
accidents and fatalities are caused by impaired drivers at twice the
legal .08 BAC limit, and those who repeatedly drive while legally
CRFA is one of Canada's largest business associations, with more than
30,000 members representing restaurants, bars, caterers, institutions
and other foodservice providers. Alberta's $8.4-billion restaurant
industry employs more than 125,000 people in communities across the
SOURCE Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association
For further information:
Prasanthi Vasanthakumar, Communications Specialist, 1-800-387-5649, ext. 4254 or firstname.lastname@example.org.