Calgary, Alberta – Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Canada has unveiled Damages, its new program for the 2011-2012 school assembly, with a premiere at Forest Lawn High School in Calgary.

Damages and the French version Dommages will be seen by more than one million students across the country over the course of the school year.

The mini-movie follows a character, Jesse, from his decision to drive impaired through the resulting crash and the criminal justice system. His future and plans for university are replaced with the possibility of a prison term and a criminal record.

“The characters are fictional, but the scenarios are all too real,” said MADD Canada national president Denise Dubyk. “With our school program, we want to get students thinking about safe choices and how to protect themselves. We want to reinforce the messages about never driving impaired, or accepting a ride from someone who is impaired. We want them to understand that it is never worth the risk.”

MADD said that in 2006, drivers between the ages of 16 and 25 accounted for only 13.2 per cent of the population, but made up 33.4 per cent of the total alcohol-related crash deaths. The combination of drugs and driving is also a major concern, as Canadians between the ages of 14 and 25 have one of the highest rates of cannabis use in the world.

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