PETERBOROUGH, ON – The Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association (CSAAA) is calling for the removal of Minister Bill Blair from the Public Safety file immediately.
Following a reading of yesterday’s regulation banning a swath of semi-automatic firearms and a briefing with representatives from Public Safety, CBSA, Global Affairs, the R.C.M.P. and Justice, it was abundantly clear that the regulations were rushed through and are flawed, unfair and dangerous.
“The Government could not answer simple questions about processes; why bolt action firearms were included on the list; how shipments en-route to Canada for law enforcement contracts would be handled; would carriers currently in possession of shipments that are now prohibited be covered without a prohibited license and what is their liability; if firearms businesses fail and can’t ensure the security of their inventory what should they do; and on and on,” said Alison de Groot, Managing Director of the CSAAA. “It was almost like the departments weren’t told this was coming either.”
Included in the regulation is a provision for owners of the now prohibited firearms to export them during the amnesty. This was presented to the CSAAA in their briefing as an opportunity for business owners to “return” unsold product. Unfortunately, U.S. export permits do not allow for any products sent from the U.S. to be re-exported out of Canada. When the CSAAA asked the Government if they had informed the U.S. and negotiated an exception so Canadian businesses can “return” unsold product they said they had not made any prior arrangement with the U.S.
The CSAAA also noted that some firearms on this “banned” list have very similar characteristics as other firearms not on the list. “There are a huge number of contradictions between the definitions outlined in the regulation and the list in the Gazette and reflected in the FRT. It’s completely random and unbelievably unfair that one manufacturer is targeted and another one is not, even though the firearms have the same characteristics,” said de Groot.
“We see so many security and public safety issues with this legislation, it’s incredibly dangerous and completely unfair. This OIC is a knee-jerk emotional reaction enacted in an amateur way and demonstrates gross negligence and incompetence. As a result, we feel the Prime Minister and Canadians have been grossly underserved and ill advised by Minister Blair and call for his immediate removal from Public Safety.
The CSAAA is consulting with industry members and its legal advisors to explore all options to defend and protect our Canadian small business owners and the 48,000 Canadian jobs the industry supports. In the meantime, the CSAAA is advising all business owners to consult the updated FRT prior to making any sales, retain their inventory of the affected firearms while the amnesty period is in effect, and follow all proper storage requirements.
For more information, contact:
Alison de Groot, Managing Director
Canadian Sporting Arms & Ammunition Association (CSAAA)