Cracking Down on Street Racing
June 05, 2021

Week of June 05 – June 09, 2021

Prime Minister Harper recently announced that the Federal Government will continue to act on its promise to crack down on crime. The new Conservative Government has already taken important steps to crack down on crime by introducing legislation to establish mandatory minimum sentences for gun crimes, as well as ending conditional sentences, including house arrest, for serious offences. There is still more work to be done though to make our streets and communities safer. In particular, the increasing problem of street racing is a major concern for this Government.

    Street racing is a crime that is reckless, dangerous, and all too often, it kills. It is a serious problem across Canada that is claiming new victims each year. There have been several deaths in 2006 alone because of the activity. In January, three young men were killed on an east Vancouver highway when their car spun into a ditch, splitting the car in two, as it hit a power pole. Another passenger later died in the hospital. During the same month, a Toronto man was killed when his cab was involved in a horrific crash with a street racer. Last month, a Burnaby man was killed when he lost control of his car and struck two oncoming vehicles, sending their occupants to the hospital on Mother’s Day.

    The above examples clearly demonstrate that street racing kills and is a serious crime and those that participate in this reckless crime, should serve serious time. The new Government is ready to take action by introducing legislation that will tackle street racing head on. Firstly, the Government will create a new criminal code offence for street racing, which will result in stiffer sentences for street racers. Furthermore, the Government’s bill will impose driving prohibitions on those convicted of street racing. Once the legislation is passed, a driver will face increasing penalties with each repeat offence.

    The new measures proposed by the Government are very similar to those introduced by the late Member of Parliament for Surrey North, Mr. Chuck Cadman. Mr. Cadman introduced a Private Member’s Bill in December 2002, which sought to toughen sentences for street racers, but was never passed into law. Mr. Cadman fought for tougher sentencing after a Vancouver widow and mother of two, was struck by a street racer after reaching speeds of up to 140 kilometres per hour and was killed when the car spun out of control and hit her.

    I believe this to be a very positive piece of legislation and exemplifies the new Conservative Government’s commitment to a justice system that delivers serious time to those who commit serious crimes. 
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