This will increase the education requirements for offenders caught driving under the influence of both drugs and alcohol.
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This is the We Save Lives letter of support for your reference and use. Thank you for caring.
February 5, 2016
Honorable Tom Lackey
State Capitol, Room 4009
Sacramento, California 95814
RE: AB 1571 (Lackey) DUI Treatment Programs – SUPPORT
We Save Lives is pleased to support AB 1571, a bill that would restructure the DUI Treatment Programs requirement for first offenders. Drugged-driving has seen a dramatic increase in the past several years. According to the DMV’s annual report of the DUI Management Information System (MIS), the number of drug-involved crash fatalities increased by 9% in 2013, following a 15.4% increase in 2012. Drug-involved fatalities represent 28.7% of the total number of deaths associated with car crashes. That is why we need more education for those who make the dangerous decision to drink, drug and drive. That same report found that “The re- offense rate of the alcohol or drug reckless offenders assigned to the (DUI) program is 20.6% lower than the re-offense rate of those not assigned.”
Research shows that combing both alcohol and drugs is significantly more dangerous than driving under the influence of only one substance. For example, one study found that “both THC and alcohol independently impaired people’s driving ability. But, mixing alcohol and THC—whether in high or low doses—led to a dramatic increase in road errors.”
AB 1571 allows a judge to require all first DUI offenders with a BAC of .08 to .15 and a controlled substance in their system to attend a 6 month program (current law requires 3 month). For first offenders with a BAC of .15 and above and a controlled substance, a judge may require them to attend a 9 month program (current law requires 6 month).
DUI Treatment Programs are affordable, and in cases of financial hardship, some or all fees associated with the program can be waived. Most importantly, they have been proven to significantly reduce DUI recidivism for first and repeat offenders. We save Lives supports the educational approach as another component in the war against impaired driving.
Saving lives is the primary concern of We Save Lives and that is why we support AB1571. It is also the right thing to do. As this bill targets only those individuals who believe that driving dangerously and irresponsibly is their right, it will send a strong message about the dangers of impaired driving.
President of We Save Lives.org
Founder of MADD