Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) this week announced its “2013 Legislative Champions” and recognized Representative Cindy Kirchhofer for her leadership within the Indiana General Assembly to stop drunk driving.
“MADD thanks Rep. Kirchhofer for authoring this lifesaving legislation,” MADD National President Jan Withers said in a press release. “MADD appreciates her tireless work and commitment to advancing MADD’s mission in Indiana by promoting effective DUI countermeasures like ignition interlocks for all convicted drunk drivers.”
Kirchhofer introduced HB 1517 requiring ignition interlocks for all convicted drunk drivers.
“I am honored to receive the 2013 Mothers against Drunk Driving Legislator of the Year award,” Kirchhofer said. “I believe that drunk driving is an issue that affects many Hoosiers, and I will continue in the upcoming legislative session to aid in the effort to end drunk driving and support the victims and their families.”
A major portion of MADD’s advocacy efforts in states originates from the Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving that was launched in 2006. A key component of the campaign calls for enacting legislation like HB 1517. Prior to the campaign, only one state (New Mexico), required ignition interlocks for convicted drunk drivers. Today, 20 states require or highly incentivize the use of ignition interlocks for convicted drunk drivers. Currently, Indiana is one of very few states where interlocks orders are up to a judge’s discretion.
An interlock is more effective than license suspension alone, as 50 to 75 percent of convicted drunk drivers continue to drive on a suspended license. Ignition interlocks are effective in reducing repeat drunk driving offenses by 67 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
For more information on ignition interlocks, visit the website at madd.org/interlock.
Founded in 1980 by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, MADD is the nation’s largest non-profit working to protect families from drunk driving and underagedrinking.
For more information, visit the website at www.madd.org or call 1-877-ASK-MADD.