Saying that the “safety and security of Canadians is a priority,” the Government of Canada announced today that it is rolling out new drug-impaired driving training curriculum to law enforcement across the country.
“The increased training for police and border services officers will help keep our roads safe from drug-impaired drivers,” said federal public safety minister, Ralph Goodale. “Drug-impaired driving is illegal and will not be tolerated.”
The RCMP, in consultation with police services across Canada, has developed a new “Introduction to Drug-Impaired Driving” training curriculum for Canadian law enforcement to complement current Standard Field Sobriety Testing (SFST) training.
The course is taken in person and includes training on the signs and symptoms of drug impairment found in drivers, with a special emphasis on cannabis.
It also includes an overview of the characteristics of alcohol impairment, as well as information on impaired driving laws and medical conditions that can mimic drug impairment.
All police officers receiving SFST training will now also receive the additional training. Police officers who had previously taken SFST training will have access to an online version of the “Introduction to Drug-Impaired Driving” course curriculum.
“Driving after using drugs, even some prescription drugs, is just as dangerous as drinking and driving,” said RCMP Commissioner, Brenda Lucki. “The RCMP is updating and expanding the training available to all Canadian police officers that will strengthen their ability to continue to detect drug-impaired drivers.”
Border Services Officers (BSO) from the Canada Border Services Agency will also receive SFST training, including the “Introduction to Drug-Impaired Driving” curriculum specifically tailored to the agency’s mandate.
The expanded training will be standard for new BSOs deployed at land ports of entry.