Volunteer program offers chance for distracted drivers to work off fines

The John Howard Society of Saskatchewan is offering people needing to pay off their distracted driving ticket another option.

The society’s Fine Option program allows residents to work volunteer hours in the community rather than having to pay up, a financially friendly option for drivers who are caught distracted driving and are handed a $580 fine for their first offence.

People are connected with volunteer opportunities at a number of organizations in Regina, Saskatoon and around the Moose Jaw area.

CEO Shawn Fraser said anyone can access the program.

“Really, it’s for anyone who maybe doesn’t have the cash on hand to pay the ticket, or if you do have the cash and you want to work off some of those hours and give back to the community, we welcome anybody to access these services,” explained Fraser.

A lot of the work they do is with traffic infractions like distracted driving offences or speeding tickets. The society also allows other minor offences for the program.

Fraser said it’s a win-win situation.”We facilitate that process with a number of community agencies. People don’t have to fork out the money and community service agencies get much needed help.”

Based on the amount of fines incurred, over 100,000 hours to be exact, the volunteer hours from last year’s program contributed more than a $1 million for community organizations in the province.

More information on the program can be found at their website.

Harsher penalties for distracted driving were introduced on February 1.

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