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B.C. nurse’s driver’s licence suspended after she couldn’t do breathalyzer test due to facial paralysis (CBC News)

I do think Canadians should be concerned because of this exact issue…There are a number of people who are more vulnerable, whether they have illnesses or injuries that prevent them from being available to comply with the demand.

Jennifer Teryn, Lawyer

“A B.C. nurse whose face is partially paralyzed says her driver’s licence was suspended and her car impounded after she was unable to provide a breathalyzer sample during a roadside check — and that Canadian laws about alcohol breath tests leave people with certain disabilities no way to prove their innocence.

Jamie van der Leek, 44, of Port Alberni, says she developed a severe case of Bell’s palsy — damage to the facial nerve, which left her paralyzed on one side of her face — during one of her pregnancies.

The palliative care nurse was vacationing with her husband and children in Penticton, in B.C.’s Okanagan Valley, on Saturday, when an RCMP officer stopped her for a roadside check after a day at the lake. The officer asked van der Leek to provide a breath sample to test for alcohol. She says she tried, but because of her condition, she failed to create a seal over the device and blow in enough air for a viable test.

She says she explained her medical condition to the officer, who told her she was being difficult and said she would be served an immediate roadside suspension.”

Michelle Goussoub, CBC News

Full article available on CBC.ca.

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