OTTAWA (October 26, 2011) – “I have been waiting years for this day,” said a pleased Leon Benoit, Member of Parliament for Vegreville-Wainwright. “Today, our Conservative Government introduced the long-awaited Ending the Long-Gun Registry Act.”
“Since the legislation was tabled 18 years ago, I have strongly opposed this registry, as have the majority of my constituents,” explained Benoit. “Since our Conservative Government was first elected in 2006, the Opposition has twice blocked the elimination of the registry, and I am thrilled that we are now finally on the way to successfully abolishing it for good.”
The legislation introduced today will:
- repeal the requirement to register non-restricted firearms (long-guns);
- provide for the destruction of all records pertaining to the registration of long-guns currently contained in the Canadian Firearms Registry and under the control of the chief firearms officers; and
- maintain controls over restricted and prohibited firearms.
Under the proposed reforms, firearms owners will still require a valid firearm licence to purchase or possess firearms and to purchase ammunition. They will also be required to undergo police background checks, pass a firearms safety training course and comply with firearms safe storage and transportation requirements. In addition, individuals will continue to be required to register prohibited and restricted firearms, such as handguns.
“Our Government has always been clear; by eliminating the wasteful and ineffective long-gun registry, we can instead focus our efforts on measures that actually tackle crime and make our streets and communities safe,” said Benoit. “We will continue to uphold our commitment to effective gun control measures that help keep firearms out of the hands of criminals and off our streets.”
Benoit explained that he and his colleagues have put in place many effective measures such as putting more police on the streets, fighting organized crime, introducing mandatory minimum penalties for serious gun crime and combating gun smuggling.
“Once this legislation is passed, farmers and duck hunters will no longer be considered criminals,” concluded Benoit. “It is just one more promise that this Government is following through on and I am very glad to be able to add my vote of support. The introduction of this legislation is consistent with the Government’s efforts to ensure our firearms laws target real criminals and protect the safety of the public.
For an online version of the legislation, visit: www.parl.gc.ca