Initiative Program Proves Helpful For DUI Offenders - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Initiative Program Proves Helpful For DUI Offenders

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(WLNS) - Michigan's sobriety court started the Ignition Interlock Initiative four years ago. This allows repeated DUI offenders to keep their license while they are undergoing rehabilitation.

Since then they've done studies to show how effective it has been over the last three years. 6 News Sharon Yoo says the program has been successful and will expand.

Floyd Brandt is a graduate of Michigan’s sobriety court's treatment program. Two years of hard work through the program helped him recover from his 3 DUI offenses and to, “see what I was doing, give myself some time, let the chemicals, the drugs get out of my system. And look back and see what kind of destruction I was doing to my life,” said Brandt.

The program also has the Ignition Interlock Initiative. It is essentially a car with a built-in camera and Breathalyzer.
The success of the program stems from a reward system that allows offenders to continue driving, as long as they are sober.
And for a construction worker like Brandt who has to drive more than 40,000 miles each year, ”the license is huge. I really appreciate these people, the senate and the congress to try to get our driver’s license back.”

Allowing offenders access to cars acts as a powerful incentive, in fact, so powerful that those with the initiative are 1.5 times more likely to successfully completely the program.

“They are motivated to have their licenses and also I think it's somewhat easy for them to complete the program because they have their license to go to court, go to treatment, they can go to testing and so on,” said Judge Harvey Hoffman, 56th Judicial District, Eaton County.

As a proud graduate of the program, Brandt says, “it has direction. It has direction in forcing people to not drink and drive,”

Due to the success of the program, it will be expanding to all 30 sobriety courts in the state.

To find out more about the Ignition Interlock Initiative, visit http://www.michigan.gov/sos/0,4670,7-127-1627_8665_9074-254434--,00.html.

 By Sharon Yoo, 6 News Intern
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