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Not everyone who is charged with impaired driving has their name listed on a Winnipeg Police press release, but those charged through the Festive Checkstop Program do.

The list for those charged under the December 2017 program came out yesterday. Constable Stephane Fontaine, the Winnipeg Police impaired driving counter measures coordinator, says the service has been releasing those names for many years.

"We hope that it has a deterrent effect on people in making the decision hopefully not to drink and drive during the particular holiday season," says Fontaine.

Constable Fontaine says if Winnipeg Police named everyone charged with impaired driving, all through the year, it would lose its flair.

Festive Checkstop names are released once all charges are laid. Thirty-eight names are on the list released Monday. The youngest is 21 years old, the oldest is 64. There were 46 people named on last year's list.

Stats can fluctuate, says Fontaine, but he believes the program is having an impact.

"I know for a fact that whenever we kick-off our campaign for the month of December it becomes kind of the popular talk of the town. So if people are talking about not (drinking and driving) or not (consuming drugs and driving) then that's a good thing," he says.

Denise Elias is the president of MADD's Winnipeg chapter. She says Manitoba is a giving province and we come to people's aid. She would like people to come to the aid of one another when it comes to impaired driving.

"Ensure that your guests are leaving in a safe way; offer them to stay overnight; provide other sources of entertainment and beverages other than just alcoholic beverages; look after one another; if you can without danger to yourself, take the keys away," says Elias.

According to Fontaine, there is an encouraging development officers are seeing when it comes to holiday driving.

He says officers who are part of the Festive Checkstop Program are telling him they're coming across more and more people who've designated themselves DD or made alternate plans to get around.

"You know, there'll be a group of four or five in the vehicle, and they've made the conscious effort to designate the one person to drive them all home at the end of the night, so that's exactly what we're hoping to accomplish in our messaging," says Fontaine.

According to the 2016 Manitoba Public Insurance Traffic Collision Statistics Report, impairment was a contributing factor in nearly 36 per cent of fatal collisions in Manitoba that year.

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