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Surrey mom who lost her daughter is in Ottawa pushing for harsher impaired driving penalties

Last Updated Sep 18, 2017 at 10:38 am PST

Kassandra Kaulius (Source: Families For Justice/Facebook)

'Families for Justice' wants to see Criminal Code adopt the charge 'vehicular homicide'

Markita Kaulius, whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, in Ottawa, pushing for tougher impaired driving penalties

SURREY (NEWS 1130) – A mother from Surrey whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver is in Ottawa today, helping push for tougher penalties.

Markita Kaulius — who is president of the group Families for Justice — lost her daughter Kassandra in 2011.

Among the changes they would like to see to the Criminal Code of Canada is the adoption of the charge “vehicular homicide,” which was one of the focuses of Kassandra’s Law — a 2015 private member’s bill meant to increase the punishment for impaired driving.

In a Facebook posting, Families for Justice says, “the original Bills we put forth a few years ago, were tabled, changed, renumbered, and reintroduced … We felt they were critical to help bring about better safety for all the public. Unfortunately, the Federal Liberal Government decided that although the Bills had already worked their way through 2 readings in the House, and many Lawyers input, at the last moment they turned them down. We were shocked and very disappointed to say the least!”

Kaulius and her colleagues are going before the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights today and tomorrow to put pressure on the federal government for harsher penalties for impaired driving.

“Once again they will impart the latest facts and figures, with regard to the huge costs and loss of lives that are involved with Impaired Driving. Once again, they will speak about the innocent victims, and the overwhelming toll and heart break on the families left behind,” reads the group’s post. “In the six years we have been bringing our message to the Government, and waiting for them to take these issues seriously, we have lost approximately another 7200 other Canadians who should not have died.”

Besides tougher penalties for impaired driving, the group would also like to see random breath testing by police.