Press Release: Discriminating against the older driver

July 18, 2003 – Toronto, ON: How irresponsible for the media to keep harping on the same old ageist perspective of all older drivers being a safety risk on the road!

CARP, Canada’s Association for the Fifty-Plus is concerned that every time there is an accident involving a senior, every other senior across the country is held responsible. Obviously, this is not the case for drivers under the age of 80, 65, 75 – in fact, which age is the benchmark in this process of discrimination? The reality is that there are good drivers and bad drivers — at any age.

The Association believes that regular screening for ALL drivers makes sense, but based on ability and medical condition, not age. Graduated licenses should be considered as an alternative to outright suspension for ALL “medically-impaired” drivers, not just seniors.

According to CARP, determinants need to be developed for health care professionals to effectively measure physical and cognitive impairment in terms of safe driving – and this includes clearly defining medical impairment to avoid abuse. In fact, CANDRIVE is a research program doing just that, and CARP is supporting this initiative wholeheartedly.

Yes, we have an aging population, as the media keeps reminding us in order to justify discrimination against the older driver. But, to be realistic, this is not a reason or excuse for this discrimination that will UNNECESSARILY isolate seniors, take away their independence and serious impact the volunteer sector of our society.

For information & interviews, please contact:
Judy Cutler
Director of Communications
416 363-8748 ext. 141
email: [email protected]

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