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Families For Justice petition pushing for tougher penalties for drunk drivers

WATCH ABOVE: The mother of a victim of impaired driving met with several politicians this weekend including Ontario Senator Tobias Enverga to discuss  Bill C-652, which was introduced in Ottawa earlier this month. The bill calls for “impaired driving causing death” to be termed as “vehicular homicide” and for the crime to carry a life sentence. Tracy Nagai has more.

CALGARY – A Calgary mom is determined to see harsher penalties for drunk drivers.

Last year, Grace Pesa’s son Francis was killed after being hit by a man who was impaired and behind the wheel.

A new bill aims to up the ante for punishing drunk drivers and Pesa’s looking to the senate for support.

Francis Pesa may be gone but his memory lives on throughout the family home, with pictures and paintings capturing the 20-year-old’s once infectious smile.

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His sudden death was devastating for his family.

“I wish I’m missing a limb or I am paralyzed because people will see the physical sign of what I am going through. Thursday, I was at work I ended up in ER. I didn’t go to work yesterday and yet you see me now as whole,” Grace said.

Francis was killed January 1st, 2014 by a drunk driver.

37-year-old Kulwinder Singh Chohan was more than double over the legal driving limit.

Last month, he was sentenced to three years behind bars.

Now Grace hopes a new bill will help to highlight the severity of the crime.

It’s called Bill C-652 or ‘Kassandra’s Law’ named after 22-year-old Kassandra Kaulius of Surrey, BC.

She was killed by a drunk driver in 2011.

If passed the bill  would create a new criminal charge called vehicular homicide instead of impaired driving causing death.

“Kassandra’s Law does one thing that families for justice and tens of thousands of Canadians are calling for. To call this crime what is truly is vehicular homicide,” Lamgley, BC MP Mark Warawa said.

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The bill was introduced earlier this month, Grace and Families For Justice are now seeking support from the senate and have secured a meeting with Senator Tobias C. Enverga jr.

“Every bill, every private members bill or government bill eventually if passed has to go through the senate so to garnish support from a senator would be very good for us,” Sheri Arsenault from Families For Justice said.

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The goal is to one day see mandatory minimum sentences be put in place.

Grace intends to see it through to the end.

“Whatever we do, it won’t bring Francis back,” she said. “This is for us living. Everyone who uses the street, this is for them.”

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Families For Justice is currently circulating a petition calling for harsher penalties.

You can find a link to it on our facebook page.