(Black Press files)

MADD Canada’s anti-impaired driving campaign coming to Surrey school

The ‘hard-hitting’ program is descending on schools across the country

MADD Canada’s latest campaign is coming to schools across the country, with a stop in Surrey in February.

Titled “No Tomorrow,” the 45-minute program explores how mixing alcohol and drugs with driving can have devastating and permanent consequences.

“One choice, one split-second decision, and your life can change forever,” said MADD Canada Regional Manager Tracy Crawford. “We want students to understand how driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs can impact their lives. We want to motivate them to always make the right decision, and protect themselves and their friends from impaired driving.”

MADD Canada notes impaired driving takes a “disproportionate toll on young people.”

“Traffic crashes are the largest single cause of death among 16-25 year olds, and more than 50 per cent of those crashes involve alcohol and/or drugs,” the organization states. “Road and other crash deaths were the leading cause of death for young people between the ages of 16 and 25 years in 2014, and we estimate more than half of those crashes involved alcohol and/or drugs.”

MADD Canada says the new campaign’s “hard-hitting” message tells the story of band mates Marcus, Corey, Trevor and Lee.

“After winning a contest to record a demo, they get an incredible chance to audition for a music school. Before their audition, Trevor has a few drinks,” a release notes. “He is affected more than he thinks, and makes mistakes during the audition. Marcus is offered a spot at the school right away, and Corey and Lee are given an opportunity to re-apply next year. But Trevor, who was obviously impaired during the audition, is not offered a spot or chance to re-apply. The school has a zero tolerance policy for alcohol or drugs. Trevor storms off to the car. Marcus tries unsuccessfully to take the keys. Realizing he can’t stop Trevor from driving away, Marcus jumps in the car. What happens next changes all of their lives forever.”

The fictional story in “No Tomorrow” is followed by testimonials from real-life victims who talk about their loved ones who were killed or seriously and permanently injured in impaired driving crashes.

See also: Sign drunk driving petition, grieving mom of Surrey victim pleads

See also: Mother of Surrey woman killed by drunk driver weighs on on proposed impaired driving laws

It will be presented on Feb. 21 at Surrey’s Queen Elizabeth Secondary at 1:30 p.m.

“Student surveys show that MADD Canada’s efforts to reach young people with the sober driving message are working,” according to MADD. “In a 2015-2016 survey of students who saw that year’s school assembly program, titled 24 Hours: 80 per cent of respondents said the program was effective in delivering its message about not driving while impaired; two-thirds of respondents said the presentation will be effective in changing behaviours regarding impaired driving; and 97 per cent of respondents supported a similar presentation the following year.”

MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) Canada was formed in 1989 to “create a national network of victims, survivors and concerned citizens working to stop impaired driving and to support victims and survivors of this violent crime.”

See also: ZYTARUK: Fighting still, in Surrey and Ottawa, for Kassandra’s Law

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