Firearms Owners Association
Click here to view/download the pdf version of this letter - 2 pages (4.5 MB .PDF)
December 12, 2011
Audrey De Block
Dear Ms. De Block,
Thank you for taking the time to write me regarding the elimination of the Firearms Act. Your views and experiences are valid reasons why our government has made it a top priority to pass legislation that will see an end to the inefficient long gun registry. I am sorry to hear of your daughter's troubles with the licencing system.
The licencing system is in place to (sic) It is our Government's commitment to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals and protect the safety of the public. By requiring a license, Canadians can be assured that those law-abiding citizens in possession of firearms have been approved to own their firearm and know safe storage and operation procedures.
This being said, we will not be changing the requirement for individuals to hold a license.
On October 25, 2011, I was pleased to announce alongside the Honourable Vic Toews, Minister of Public Safety, the introduction of Bill C-19, the Ending the Long-Gun Registry Act.Once passed, Bill C-19 will repeal the requirement to register non-restricted firearms (long-guns). It will also provide for the destruction of all records pertaining to the registration of long-guns in the Canadian Firearms Registry and under the control of the chief firearms officers.
Firearms owners who wish to acquire a firearm or ammunition would continue to be required to have their criminal record regarded by the issuer of the license, pass a firearms safety course and comply with all firearms safe storage and transportation requirements. Those who own firearms will still require a valid firearms license, and to register prohibited and restricted firearms, such as handguns.
This government firmly believes that the requirement to register long-guns has unfairly targeted farmers, hunters and sport shooters as criminals for simply owning a long-gun. These law-abiding Canadians have been burdened for far too long with the red-tape that the long-gun registry has caused.
Not only has it served to criminalize lawful Canadian gun-owners, the long-gun registry has cost Canadians many millions of dollars for a tool that is ineffective at preventing crime. The majority of homicides committed in Canada do not involve long-guns. Unfortunately, gun crimes happen all too frequently despite the registry being in place. The problem is not with the registered gun-owners, it is with criminals acting outside the law.
By eliminating the wasteful and ineffective long-gun registry, we can instead focus our efforts on more effective measures to tackle crime and protect families and communities.
Hundreds of thousands of Canadians have not changed their opinion on the long-gun registry, and our government has held true to its election promise by introducing Bill C-19, the Ending the Long-Gun Registry Act. I believe that it's time we act to pass Bill C-19 as quickly as possible to get rid of this incredibly ineffective registry that penalizes innocent Canadians.
It's abundantly clear that when it comes to gun control, legislation should be focused on measures that prevent and reduce crime, not responsible firearms owners. The Government of Canada is taking steps to ensure that gun control in this country is focused on fighting crime, keeping firearms out of the wrong hands and minimizing burdens on law-abiding gun owners.
Once again, thank you for writing with your support.