Article by Rachel Aiello, CTV News
With marijuana legalization approaching, the RCMP is rolling out a new introductory training course for police officers across the country.
The in-person training will inform officers about the symptoms of drug impairment on drivers, “with a special emphasis on cannabis,” and includes information on impaired driving laws. The RCMP said the curriculum was developed alongside other Canadian police services.
The program, called “Introduction to Drug-Impaired Driving” will be required for law enforcement officers in addition to the preexisting standard field sobriety test training. Canada Border Service Agency officers will also be receiving the training.
The timeline and scope of the training was not announced. The federal government is eyeing late August or early September for when marijuana will be fully legalized across the country.
“Driving after using drugs, even some prescription drugs, is just as dangerous as drinking and driving. Everyone has a role to play in road safety. 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,” said RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki in the statement announcing the new curriculum.
The legislation to implement new drug-impaired driving laws regarding marijuana is still before the Senate. There, senators and expert witnesses have expressed uncertainty about how to legislate and enforce ways to measure marijuana impairment.