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B.C. Driving Age Discrimination

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Steve Wallace: B.C.’s rules of the road are dumb and dumberSteve Wallace: B.C.’s rules of the road are dumb and dumber


Here are some examples of how regulatory authorities are not only dumbing down the very regulations that have been designed to protect the public, but also dummying up the regulatory assault on a specific age group.

Seniors are now responsible for the entire medical appointment fee when a visit with a doctor is deemed mandatory by the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles. In the past, a portion of the fee was paid by the licensing authority. This is no longer the case. At age 80, most drivers receive a notice to attend at a doctor’s office for a physical and cognitive examination. The cost of such an appointment is the responsibility of the senior. The cost of such a mandatory exam is governed by a fee schedule, but most often averages between $100 and $200. This amount is a hardship for some seniors. This obvious age discrimination is very likely to become a charter challenge, but that is another topic altogether.

Most seniors today are law-abiding children of the Great Depression and the Second World War. They are very respectful and relatively obedient to authority. They are not militant, as a rule. Despite the fact they are not being treated fairly by the application of the hodgepodge of rules and fiscal inconsistency as it relates to the senior driving retesting, they soldier on.

One day, grey power will persist and thousands of seniors will be on the steps of the provincial legislature, standing up for themselves.
There have been a great number of seniors, with perfect driving records, required to take a practical driving test. It is stressful for them. They lose sleep and worry. The time to get through the process can take months, not weeks.
It is dumb to test drivers with perfect records. The dumbest move of all is an indefensible fee structure for seniors’ testing.