Second reading of Bill S-223, An Act to amend the Firearms Act and the Criminal Code and to make consequential changes to other Acts

Second reading of Bill S-223, An Act to amend the Firearms Act and the Criminal Code and to make consequential changes to other Acts

Hon. Céline Hervieux-Payette:

Honourable senators, as most of you probably know, I have always been independent and stood up for my ideas. As a Quebecer, I believe in gun control policies, but I also defend the sport of hunting. I used to go hunting with my father when I was younger. In that context, I am reintroducing my bill to strengthen Canadians’ security and promote hunting and recreational shooting.

The recent events in the indigenous community of La Loche were certainly chilling. This was a disastrous tragedy for the victims’ families, to whom I offer my deepest condolences. It is too late now to comment on the facts. We must allow the investigation to move forward, but we know some of the key factors that contributed to the situation.

Poverty, bullying, and lack of mental health resources are quite likely factors that led a 17-year-old boy to do something unthinkable and shoot innocent people at a school in the small Alberta community.

Furthermore, it seems that the problem of minors having access to guns is another important factor. I have been to Canada’s North many times during my career, both as a member of the other place and as a senator, in order to advocate for the seal hunt. I can tell you that the vast majority of indigenous people use hunting rifles appropriately. I have come to conclusion that in the North, firearms are used as a tool for subsistence hunting, while in the South, people seem to be increasingly obsessed with firearms and less interested in using them for the pleasure of eating deer meat or other types of venison.

This came to me when I was asked by a journalist to comment on the dramatic increase in the popularity of restricted firearms, which are essentially firearms that are capable of discharging centre-fire ammunition in a semi-automatic manner and handguns.

Honourable colleagues, the numbers are astounding. In five years, the number of people with a possession and acquisition licence for restricted firearms has jumped by 75 per cent in Canada.

These weapons were designed strictly for military purposes. Although I understand that they can be used for recreational shooting, they are simply of no use for hunting.

I would like to emphasize that my bill does not go after honest citizens who obey the law. On the contrary, the main objective of this bill is to encourage hunting and recreational shooting in Canada while ensuring the Canadians’ security. Its purpose is threefold: first, to ensure the security of all Canadians; second, to ensure that people who love hunting and recreational shooting have the opportunity to engage in those activities safely; third, to remove from our homes any firearm not used for hunting.

Honourable senators, the former Conservative government completely transformed our firearms regime. When the Conservatives were in power, Canada was one of the few countries to loosen gun control measures. After the 2006 Dawson College shooting, where one young woman was killed and 19 others were injured by gunfire, and the 2014 Moncton shooting, where three RCMP officers were killed and two others were injured, the Harper government passed Bill C-19, which abolished the long gun registry, and Bill C-42, which its authors boasted was a common sense bill.

All of that is to say that a responsible government certainly would not have acted in this way. Remember the events at the École Polytechnique in 1989, motivated by Marc Lépine’s misogyny. No one can forget the terrible evening of December 6, 1989, when 14 young women were murdered in cold blood, simply because they were women.

The Chrétien government took action and showed leadership when it passed Bill C-68 in 1995, which would become the Firearms Act. Thanks to that government, we boast a low firearm-related death rate, a fact that is now ironically used as an argument by the gun lobby. Our chance of being killed by a gun is the same as our chance of being killed by lightning, because of the gun control policies introduced by a previous Liberal government.

We cannot stick our heads in the sand about the near-daily events to the south of us, where our neighbours do not have a system to keep the public safe like the one we have in Canada. The statistics speak for themselves. More than 30,000 people were killed by guns in the United States in 2011, compared to 698 in Canada. During President Obama’s two terms, there have been nine mass shootings that have led to the unnecessary death of 119 innocent victims who were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

When President Obama sounded the alarm in January, his words resonated here in Canada, and I saw this for myself on television. No one can remain unmoved by his impassioned plea to change the American public’s view of firearms. Like Prime Minister Chrétien, President Obama took action. In spite of the limited legal framework of his office and the conservative majority in Congress, he managed to implement the Common Sense Gun Safety Reform.

Honourable senators, let me address the various shootings in the U.S. by explaining a fundamental difference between the firearms system in Canada and of the system in the U.S.: the right to own or bear a firearm in Canada is not enshrined in the Canadian Constitution.

Similarly, restaurants have to pay fees to various municipal and provincial agencies to be able to sell and serve alcoholic products to their customers because it is a privilege to sell alcoholic products in Canadian cities. Many other activities have to be regulated as well.

Here are the seven bold and progressive measures that I want to implement with this legislation. I hope you will share my opinion.

First, the bill overhauls the current firearms program by prohibiting all firearms in Canada from being kept in dwelling- houses, except for hunting firearms and collectors’ firearms, which receive special treatment.

Second, it redefines two of the three existing classes of firearms by creating the hunting firearm category and the circumscribed firearm category, which includes most of the firearms that were restricted under the previous program.

Third, it permits the possession of hunting firearms in dwelling- houses and restricts the use and storage of circumscribed firearms to shooting clubs.

Fourth, it limits the transport of circumscribed firearms to specialized transporters, similar to Brink’s, which have no interest other than providing secure transportation, thus strengthening control over the movement of firearms.

Fifth, the bill replaces the term “registration certificate” with “inscription certificate.” I want to emphasize that the bill does not reinstate the Canadian unrestricted firearms registry. That is why we wanted to replace the term “registration” with “inscription,” which is more appropriate.

Sixth, the bill strengthens the role of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Commissioner of Firearms with a statutory provision.

Seventh, the bill undoes all the provisions of Bill C-42, except for the prohibition on obtaining a possession and acquisition licence following a domestic violence conviction.

We will now review in detail these seven measures.

To begin with, I believe that we must reverse the current regime by only allowing hunting firearms to be kept within a dwelling.

It is not a big secret that the Canadian gun lobby became vastly more powerful during the Harper government’s tenure.

Canada’s National Firearm Association currently has more than 75,000 members. I have to point out that they send me emails every day. This group has been constantly lobbying the government for many years. Its message is simplistic. It maintains that guns don’t kill people, people do.

I do not subscribe to this narrow view. People kill one another with firearms. I am certain that all honourable members of this chamber remember the horrible tragedy that took place on December 14, 2012, when Adam Lanza, a 20-year-old autistic man, committed an unimaginable act, opening fire in an elementary school with a semi-automatic assault rifle. Twenty children between the ages of six and seven and six staff members were murdered in a cowardly manner.

Although Adam Lanza’s actions were unthinkable and incomprehensible, we cannot place all the blame on him. This young man suffered from mental illness and social disabilities. He should never have had access to this type of firearm. The blame should be placed on the gun lobby, which constantly promotes violence and the nonsense of arming civilians.

When these incidents occur, the focus is too often on the individual who committed the massacre and not on the part played by the gun lobby and its rhetoric. In a free and democratic society like ours, we cannot be satisfied with simply managing the symptoms; we also have to attack the root causes.

People here in Canada will recall the tragic events of 2014, when Justin Bourque went on a murderous rampage and opened fire on RCMP officers. Three police officers were killed and two others were seriously injured in the shooting. Much like Adam Lanza, Mr. Bourque was a real gun fanatic. Unlike the vast majority of criminals who use firearms to commit crimes, Mr. Bourque had duly registered all of his weapons. He had all the necessary permits.

The proposed change to the current system, which would authorize only hunting weapons in dwellings, is a strong response to the false claims of the gun lobby. Unlike the gun lobby, I am not trying to sell weapons; I only want to protect the safety of Canadians.

The safety of our fellow citizens leads me to the second point of my bill: it redefines two of the three existing classes of firearms.

This major change to the definitions will translate into a clearer distinction between the firearms that could reasonably be used for hunting — and therefore can be kept in a dwelling in accordance with the appropriate regulations — and the firearms used by sport shooters in shooting clubs that must be stored at those clubs.

What, then, are those definitions?

A hunting firearm is defined as any firearm with a smoothbore or striated barrel that is more than 470 mm long, in other words a shotgun or rifle. Fear not, for I have not made any of this up. Semi-automatic weapons are not included in the definition of hunting firearm, with the exception of 22-calibre rimfire semi- automatic rifles.

Many people have asked me whether semi-automatic hunting rifles, which are more commonly known as shotguns, are included in the definitions of hunting firearms. The answer is yes.

This new definition of hunting firearm is based on information from hunters and a Canadian Firearms Safety Course instructor. In fact, when the bill was being examined, the instructors strongly advised against using semi-automatic weapons for hunting because of the many accidents that they cause.

Bill S-223 repeals the privilege of those with a possession and acquisition licence to keep at their dwelling-house any centre-fire semi-automatic rifles. However, Bill S-223 does not prohibit the right to use such rifles. Those who are passionate about handling these rifles and would like to continue pursuing their passion can do so at shooting ranges, where these rifles would be stored. I want my bill to make sport shooting and its related businesses safe.

Therefore, I am not against firearms, but I support their use in a safe manner.

Thus, with Bill S-223, any holder of a possession and acquisition licence will be able to acquire and own a centre-fire rifle and use it at a shooting club designated for that purpose. When the holder of the licence has finished his shooting practice, he will have to store his firearm at the shooting club.

The distinction between a 22-calibre rim-fire semi-automatic rifle and a centre-fire semi-automatic rifle is a key aspect of my bill.

The United Kingdom made that same distinction after the terrible events in Hungerford. In 1987, a crazed gunman named Michael Ryan murdered 16 people, including his own mother. Carrying a handgun and two semi-automatic rifles — a Type 56 assault rifle, which is a Chinese variant of the AK-47 assault rifle, and an M1 Carbine — Ryan also injured 14 other people before committing suicide. According to the authorities, there was no motive for Ryan’s murder spree. Another important fact is that Ryan apparently had legal possession of all of his firearms in accordance with British laws at the time.

Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher promptly responded to this horrible tragedy the following year. The Iron Lady’s Conservative government completely banned all semi-automatic centre-fire rifles in the United Kingdom and restricted the use of hunting rifles to those with a maximum capacity of three shells. The only firearms that have remained legal in the United Kingdom are 22- calibre semi-automatic rimfire rifles.

Britain’s commitment to strict firearms policies did not stop in 1988, however, because in 1996, nine years after the Hungerford tragedy, Great Britain went through the shock of another shooting rampage. A man named Thomas Hamilton entered a primary school in Dunblane, Scotland, and killed 16 children aged four and five, as well as their physical education teacher, before killing himself. Hamilton legally owned two hunting rifles and a handgun. The handgun used in the massacre had been properly registered.

In response to the massacre, the British government called on Lord William Douglas Cullen to chair a royal commission to investigate the circumstances that caused Hamilton to commit such an act and, more importantly, to make recommendations to prevent such a tragedy from ever happening again.

In his report, Lord Cullen recommended that the government introduce tighter controls on gun ownership. In response to the Cullen report, the British government passed the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1997. Thus, the law now prohibits all civilians from owning and storing most handguns in a private dwelling in Great Britain.

These gun control policies have had some impressive results. In 2011, there were just 38 gun deaths in Britain, while in the same year, Canada had 153 gun deaths, although its population less than half that of Britain. According to other 2011 data, the British homicide rate is apparently lower than Canada’s, at 0.06 per 100,000 people, compared to 0.45 per 100,000 people in Canada. All of the measures taken by the United Kingdom in 1988 and 1997 prove once again that enforcing strict gun control and removing guns from homes helps lower the number of gun-related homicides.

Bill S-223 is based on a proven model. I don’t mind hearing all of the criticisms of my bill and getting all those tweets. However, those that attack a proven model in favour of the American model, which is clearly a security failure, make no sense. All they do is serve the interests of an industry and certainly not the interests of the Americans.

Bill S-223 replaces the existing category of restricted firearms with the category of circumscribed firearms. A circumscribed firearm is any firearm, other than a prohibited firearm, that has a barrel equal to or less than 470 millimetres, such as handguns or firearms that are capable of discharging centre-fire ammunition in a semi-automatic manner.

As the term implies, those who hold a possession and acquisition licence for such a category of firearm will be able to use and store these weapons only at a shooting club. That is the third point in my bill. I made sure that the term “circumscribed firearms” includes the notion of location.

Honourable senators, there is a reason why my bill classifies these weapons as circumscribed firearms. They have been used to commit countless murders in Canada. I am thinking of Marc Lépine, Kimveer Gill and Justin Bourque. The weapons in their arsenals all had something in common. They all complied with the provisions of the Firearms Act regarding centre-fire semi- automatic rifles. These weapons are extremely dangerous and are not useful for hunting. They therefore do not belong in a dwelling-house.

Justin Bourque’s lawyer, David Lutz, told me much the same thing. On October 31, 2014, just a few minutes after his client was sentenced, Mr. Lutz made an impassioned plea against firearms at the entrance to the Moncton courthouse. This is what he told the CBC:

Three police officers are dead in Moncton and another in Ottawa because the wrong people were in possession of firearms that should have been prohibited.

He went on to say, and I quote:

No hunter needs a firearm like the one Bourque used. None.

Fourth, Bill S-223 increases control over the movement of these semi-automatic weapons. Owners of such firearms who need to move them, for example to store them at a different shooting club or to participate in a competition, will have to use an outside service or specialized carrier to transport them.

After the previous bill was introduced, I received a number of complaints about the outrageous costs associated with storing circumscribed firearms. I tell them that it is not up to the legislator to adapt to shooting clubs and the gun lobby. It is up to businesses and lobby groups to adapt to our firearms measures, first, for the security of Canadians, and second, to promote the sport.

My staff and I consulted a number of experts, including former police officers. They all told us that centre-fire semi-automatic rifles are very dangerous compared to other weapons. They stressed that there is no need to keep such a firearm in a dwelling- house. The U.S. model proves that the more firearms are circulating in a country, the higher the homicide rate is. Bill S- 223 seeks to strengthen Canadians’ security.

My fifth point has to do with replacing the registration certificate with an inscription certificate. To me, words have meaning. Bill S-223 acknowledges the disappearance of the Canadian firearms registry. I will not get into that. I am not happy about the disappearance of this registry, which was another Conservative measure to satisfy the firearms lobby — and I will note that Quebec is in the process of creating its own registry. However, I decided that my bill would not be about that measure so as not to sidetrack the debate on my bill.

The term “registration certificate” evokes the idea of a registry. The term “registration” evokes the notion of privilege. “Inscription certificate” is more neutral and doesn’t have the same connotation as “registration certificate.” I think the term “inscription certificate” is quite apt in the case of circumscribed firearms.

My sixth point is that Bill S-223 reinforces the role of the RCMP and the Commissioner of Firearms by setting out their responsibilities in the firearms classification process, which is not found in the existing legislation. To be more specific, under Bill S- 223, and unlike Bill C-42, in making regulations, the Governor-in- Council will have to consider the recommendations of the Commissioner of Firearms when he uses his discretionary power to designate a hunting firearm. Furthermore, the Governor-in-Council will not have the discretionary power to designate a firearm other than a hunting firearm, also unlike Bill C-42. That is an important addition to the existing law because our laws are not explicitly clear about the role of these individuals in the classification of firearms.

Furthermore, Bill S-223, again unlike Bill C-42, does not enable the government to unilaterally decide to declassify a firearm or to overrule the RCMP, that is, take away its authority to assess the level of danger. The Swiss Arms matter handled by former public safety minister Steven Blaney is an excellent example.

In 2014, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police conducted an investigation after receiving complaints that these semi-automatic guns could be easily converted into automatic weapons. As a result of that investigation, the RCMP prohibited Swiss Arms firearms. A number of gun lobbyists were furious and pressured the Conservative government to overrule the RCMP’s decision.

Since the law at the time did not allow for the declassification of a firearm, on March 13, 2014, Minister Blaney announced a two- year amnesty to protect owners of these firearms from the harsh penalties that his own government had enacted through Bill C-10 in 2012, which seemed absurd. The same minister who enacted that legislation went back on his own bill. Minister Blaney announced the following in a press release dated February 28, 2014, and I quote:

. . . I was troubled to learn of a decision made by unelected bureaucrats to prohibit a number of rifles imported from Switzerland.

He was talking about the RCMP. He went on to say that he would take steps to make sure that this never happened again.

In other words, the minister at the time did not like it when the people responsible for Canadians’ safety took measures that conflicted with the interests of the gun lobby. He therefore proposed measures in Bill C-42 to give cabinet the discretionary power to “declassify” firearms, even if that went against the RCMP’s recommendations.

My seventh and last point is that my bill repeals all of the amendments that Bill C-42 made to the Canadian Firearms Scheme, with the exception of the provision that states that a person convicted of domestic violence can never receive a licence to possess or acquire a firearm.

I will conclude my explanation of the text of my bill — which, by the way, is quite lengthy — by repeating its title: Strengthening Canadians’ Security and Promoting Hunting and Recreational Shooting Act. I will not address the issue of security any further. I have already sufficiently explained how this bill will really benefit Canadians in that regard. However, what about promoting hunting and recreational shooting?

Bill S-223 narrows the definition of hunting firearms and makes them the only firearms that can legally be in users’ possession in Canada. It confirms the legitimacy of hunting, granting these firearms a privilege that no other firearms possess. It does not restore the gun registry. In other words, this bill supports hunting and hunters, and I am delighted about that. Furthermore, I am certain that if my father were still with us, he would be pleased with the bill.

The restrictive definition of hunting firearm that I used in my bill is based on guidance I had from hunters and an instructor with the Canadian Firearms Safety Course and on the British model. Under this bill, any firearms owned by hunters must really be prescribed for hunting. The image of hunters should therefore be enhanced in the eyes of the public.

As for shooting clubs, the new classification described in my bill, specifically the new category of circumscribed firearms, will make it possible to develop a market while ensuring safety. In fact, restricting the use of semi-automatic firearms other than 22- calibre firearms to shooting clubs and requiring them to be stored at the club will automatically increase activity at those clubs, which, with some facilities planning, could even become gun shops or could partner with them.

In closing, I would like to thank the team of Senate lawyers, legal experts, law clerks, and drafters who worked so hard to make this bill a reality. I can assure you that this bill was not drafted in a matter of minutes. This bill respects fans of hunting and sport shooting while having a real, positive impact on Canadians’ safety.

As I said at the beginning of my speech, I have always been an independent person. I have always defended my ideas and worked for Canadians. I come from a family of hunters who lived in a small town north of Montreal and always enjoyed eating game throughout the year, but I also believe in gun control.

This bill isn’t dogmatic or ideological. In drafting it, I used facts, figures, and documented results of Canadian, American and British policies. I also established a starting point for any government or any non-government organization that wants to thumb its nose at the gun lobby, which is very active, but which, in my opinion, is not concerned with Canadians’ safety.

72 Comments

  1. Paul Hansen 1 year ago

    Bill S-223 may be your idea of an high ideal, but it does not represent people who believe in right and wrong and the intent of the Canadian constitution. Every time a politician tells me I can or cannot do something based on nothing but their moral compass, I become very afraid. Bad people do bad things you cannot solve this by writing bad laws that slowly steal our freedom.

    • Shea LeBlanc 1 year ago

      I 100% agree with you and couldn’t have said it better myself. I plan on writing letters to every senator I can find and ask them to not support
      Bill S223
      I also don’t appreciate political leaders making me out to be a would be criminal or potential murderer because of a hobby that just so happens to be based on safety..
      Making the historical Canadian pastime of hunting and sport shooting so expensive and complicated wanting people to give up and just hand in they’re legal firearms (private property) to be destroyed.

      Bill S223 is nothing but a sneaky, crafty “GUN BAN” through attrition.
      The idea that any of this multi million dollar, let’s call it what it is “gun control/registry/ban” will help with public safety is ludicrous and will cost ten times more that the old wasteful Long Gun Registry.
      BTW: criminals don’t fallow laws.
      Taking the privileges of good law abiding citizens away is just bad politics and an
      ABUSE OF POWER.
      Mr.Shea LeBlanc
      Law abiding citizen

      • Alexander Desjardins 10 months ago

        I agree with Shea LeBlanc

      • RC 8 months ago

        I also agree with Mr. Leblanc. This is a repeat with no value. I vote NO for s-223!

  2. Doug Reimche 1 year ago

    First off, I want to say that I was very much in support of the long gun registry and was very sorry about its total destruction by the Harper regime.
    I must however say that I cannot support your proposed bill S 223 in any way shape or form, period.

  3. tom Cleveland 1 year ago

    As a avid outdoorsman we cannot let this bill pass we have to all make a stand to fight this, it is going to take a very wrong turn for the worse

  4. VC 1 year ago

    This bill will in no way impacts illegal gun smuggling. You are just further suppressing law abiding firearms owners. This bill is also very sneaky. You will destroy legally acquired firearms if gun clubs cannot store them. You know very well gun clubs cannot store all these firearms. This central repository will also be an eye candy for thieves to steal firearms. This bill is out of touch with reality.

  5. Darren 1 year ago

    As a responsible Canadian with a background in army, fire fighting, and ambulance. I hold a restricted firearms license, and I can confidantly say that this proposed bill is wrong! Law abiding gun owners should be allowed to continue to safely store in their own home handguns, or whatever other class of firearms they are licensed to own. You mention in your bill firearms strictly designed for military purposes? What a joke! There are collectors, target shooters, family heirlooms, etc. I find shooting very relaxing and it’s quite a skill. You had better start banning booze and fast cars that look dangerous because over the last five years there have been a catastrophically higher amount of deaths caused by both separately or together. Cars and alcohol/drugs are exponentially easier to gain access to. Stop wasting the people of Canada’s time, and their money so you can feel good about yourself. It’s proven that banning things you don’t like does not work and the law abiding 98% of the public is not to blame.

    • joe stent 10 months ago

      absolutley correct

  6. Sean pether 1 year ago

    I believe in gun safety and practice it. Criminals will always be able to find guns and penalizing law abiding citizens won’t change this. Stop illegal firearms from coming into Canada.

  7. Peter J Teminski 1 year ago

    I have read the section regarding burden of proof and I find it troubling. It appears, I am assumed guilty until I prove to the government otherwise. Hmmmm. Please correct me if I am mistaken. A problem has been created where there is none and with NO scientific fact based information. I cannot support this Bill in any form.

  8. Dens T. 1 year ago

    This is a bad idea that was tried and did not work. Giving it a different name is not going to change things!

  9. Paul 1 year ago

    You are talking about punishing hundreds of thousands of law abiding citizens who happen to legally own firearms. I fail to see how this will deter actual criminals from obtaining firearms illegally. As for mentally ill people using firearms to conduct random or mass shootings, I feel that the Canadian Government (Provincial and Federal) have scrapped or abandoned programs and facilities that would help to identify and treat these individuals.
    Your proposal reeks of fear mongering and should be stopped immediately.

    • Jason 1 year ago

      I agree 100%. This bill needs to be stopped IMMEDIATELY!!

    • George V 11 months ago

      I agree, this bill must be stopped.

  10. Gary Camlis 1 year ago

    This is ridiculous. Bill S-223 is another example of the concept, punish the many because of the few. In virtually every nation where its population was disarmed true freedom was ultimately lost and in many cases tyrannical governments eventually took power and enslaved the population. The idea that you can prevent gun crime by taking guns away from law biding citizens is both ludicrous and criminal in itself.

    My suggestion to you would be, concentrate on the laws we currently have on the books and enforce them. Re-establish the programs to support the mentally ill and fully fund them. This will keep them from being dumped in the streets to fend for themselves. If there is one thing Canadians do not need or want it is a Nanny State.

    Gary Camlis

  11. Gabriel Rybij 1 year ago

    I fail to see how this will positivly impact anyone in the firearms community. Speaking for my local range, and by local I mean nearly two hours from my location. They simple would not have enough space to store the amount of firearms that this bill is condemning. Now I am a law abiding citizen like the rest of the firearms community, I am also a military historian and a collector of historical firearms, this bill really hits home for me as it will not only affect my shooting, but also my ablility to collect certain firearms due to the functionality of the action. I am mostly referring to firearms of the last ww2 era (i.e m1 garand and carbine, g-43, SVT-40, e.t.c) and early modern era (i.e Swedish ljungman, Siminov SKS, M1A1, etc). My collection is quite small so far but ever expanding, what am I to do if my local range cannot store my semi-automatic firearms? The most likely answer is they will be rounded up by RCMP or police officals and be destroyed. I feel like this is just a bill proposed out of fear and lack of trust. It feels like the liberal party does not trust its own citizens with firearms, even though we have already demonstrated that we are capable of safely handling firearms and passed lengthy background checks and every time the liberals are in power they try to restrict firearms ownership in some way shape or form, be it a restriction of owning them in your home, or a registry of some kind as a Canadian gun owner I simply cannot trust the liberal party to make common sense decisions regarding firearms because of what feels like a personal vendetta against gun owners. I also feel like you throw around the term “assault rifle” without knowing the actual definition of an assault rifle. An assault rifle is a weapon capable of discharging an intermediate calibre round in a semi-auto and full automatic fire with the flick of a selector switch. Does that sound like any rifle that a civilian can buy in Canada? Because if it does then you clearly do not understand what you are talking about. Go to any local gun store and ask them for an assault rifle, you won’t find any here, they may resemble the military counterparts but an AR-15 or a SIG 556 rifle is not an assault rifle by definition. While you continue to push an anti-gun agenda there are many more problems our country is going through, and I think more time could be better suited by solving those first instead of wasting time harassing gun owners over every small detail you can find. I will not support this bill and I will be sending letters to my MP and the other channels that I know of, because when you break this bill down it says “We don’t trust you with that, you should give that to us, for safe keeping”

  12. Chris Little 1 year ago

    This bill has been written by someone who is clearly out of touch with the reality of our world. You can’t claim to respect hunting and shooting sports and in the same breath look to destroy a large portion of them. Crimes committed with legally owned firearms are very few and far between in Canada. I would much rather see something done about all of the violent criminals that get released only to reoffend, rather than waste billions again on a gun control law that will do nothing, I repeat nothing, to take guns out of the hands of criminals! Not to mention making my firearms collection virtually worthless in the same stroke.

  13. Mike K. 1 year ago

    On your comment, “people kill people with guns.” People also kill people with knives, baseball bats, and cars. The people who do, are criminals.
    The laws we have in place now are sufficient enough. The problems we have now can be lessened by stricter enforcement of these laws in our courts.
    I take offense to be treated as a person who cannot be trusted to act responsibly without supervision.

  14. Will 1 year ago

    Can someone please describe what “dwelling- houses” mean?

    Also how would one oppose this bill?

    • Ken V 1 year ago

      Dwelling-house = simply defines as to where a person /family occupys/lives and sleeps..
      IE: single family dwelling would be a single apartment/ condo / townhouse or detached sgl house.

  15. Anders Lars 1 year ago

    I fail to see how punishing law abiding citizens and imposing laws against them will deter a criminal from using firearms in a criminal way. His bill is wrong on so many levels. And just to clear something up, many hunting rifles are semi automatic.

  16. Jesse Chase 1 year ago

    What gives you the right to pass a law that states that I am no longer able to keep my bought and paid for property in my own home? might as well pass a bill stating that due to the risk of everyone having an automobile, they should now be stored in a central location so that they can’t be used in a dangerous manner, it doesn’t make any sense does it ? This bill is another example of ignorance, if you don’t play the game, don’t make the rules, I will NOT be surrendering my firearms to a central location, there are already too many mundane firearm laws as it currently stands, many should not be punished for the actions of one. If law abiding citizens keep being reprimanded for the careless actions of others, what benefit is it to us to keep following the law? I would suggest that if you really want to re-write the firearms act, then a public forum should be held to discuss matters with firearms owners, I feel that in this case the government is overstepping its bounds, the government is supposed to work FOR the people, NOT against us.

  17. Robert Meiklejohn 1 year ago

    All this bill does is focus on law abiding citizens and does nothing to get the firearms out of the hands of criminals. Maybe we should concentrate on criminals.

  18. Sean 1 year ago

    So let me see if I understand this correctly.
    You are asking a law abiding firearm owner to store their firearms at the range and pay someone to transport them to other ranges. The last time I checked, said owner have a safe at home that does the same thing.
    Also the criminals don’t play by your rules. Who’s going to tell them where they should store their firearms. Stop slapping their wrists, side stepping the real problem and deal with the criminals, increase the penalties, build more jails.
    Leave legal gun owners alone and concentrate on solving the real issues. These feel good laws are only for people who don’t understand what legal gun owners have to go through to acquire firearms, licences and permits to have them.

  19. eric schun 1 year ago

    ” The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bare arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government “. Thomas Jefferson. … Also, giving up your arms gives the 1% a hundred percent of the power. Never give up control of your arms.

    • James 1 year ago

      This is a stupid argument, it is in fact a criminal offense under weapons dangerous, this isn’t America and saying things like this don’t help Canadian gun owners they hurt them, we do not have a right to bear arms here or to use a weapon for self defense, please keep your mouth shut if you don’t know what you are talking about, veiled threats against the government using a firearm to protect your rights are definitely not a positive in this discussion and you should both be ashamed and concerned CSIS don’t come to your door now. Very poor choice of words and I can say you do NOT speak for your average Canadian hunter and sport shooter in this regard

      • Kevin 11 months ago

        Actually you’re wrong James. We do have the right to use a weapon for self defense. We don’t have the right to carry one for self defense unless we are issued an Authorization to Carry (a restricted or prohibited firearm for protection of life). But we absolutely can use a firearm or other weapon for self defense – it must be either a “weapon of opportunity” (i.e. possessed at the time of the attack for a lawful purpose, and employed because it was available and the threat justified the use of a deadly weapon) or it must be used in one’s home.

        That’s a sad statement, however. To say that I, one of the statistically most law abiding people in the entire country, cannot become licensed and trained to carry a weapon to ensure the safety and security of myself and my family, is utterly inane.

        And he was not making a veiled threat – he was simply stating a fact. If all of the guns from law abiding people are confiscated (which is the goal of the Liberal party, and they’ve stated such), then private people have *ZERO* power or ability to ensure their own safety or security. You may think it’s “impossible” for a Canadian government to act in a tyrannical or otherwise oppressive way, but if so, I would ask you to review the Residential Schools program the Canadian government pursued for so many decades. This was a targeted and planned attack of oppression on one group of people in Canada.

        I’m not saying we should all bear arms for the purpose of attacking the government – far from it. I would never suggest that kind of thing. But I am suggesting that a government that refuses to trust it’s own law abiding citizens to own guns is very suspect. What would be the reason to take guns from law abiding people, if not to ensure they cannot fight back against oppression? I hope it’s obvious I’m simply discussing the matter, and not suggesting that the government is going to put us all in work camps. But I do think it’s a valid discussion.

        Furthermore, the right to defend yourself is a natural right that has been recognized in Canada and almost every single country in the world; even the useless and overbearing UN recognizes that right! So why on earth would it not be reasonable for law abiding, licensed, and trained people to be able to use the universally-accepted “most effective tool” for that purpose?

        That’s what’s insane.

  20. Dennis C 1 year ago

    This bill is completely ridiculous. You should be spending your time and resources working on mental health services and policing the illegal trade of firearms. Firearms owners are already subjected to extensive and continous backround checks.

  21. Bill C 1 year ago

    This bill s223 is doing the same as the old long gun registry, that is, targeting the law abiding gun owner. No where in the bill does it address getting guns out of criminals hands. Hand gun and long gun illegal importation into Canada is the problem. Not the people following the law to the letter as it now stands.

  22. Dana 1 year ago

    I am a professional businesswoman and scientist who owns multiple sporting guns, including one that my Grandfather bought for my Grandmother. I also hold a Restricted Possession and Acquisition License, in case something happens to my husband (ie he passes away), I can more easily transfer his Restricted firearms into my possession, since they are items that are important to him and he will want me to pass them on to our children.

    I strongly object to this bill. It targets people like me, who own legitimate firearms and have gone to sometimes extensive lengths to store them safely, and criminalizes me for owning something that I like.

    No firearm ever jumped up and killed someone. There are those people who use firearms in the commission of a violent crime, and who do unthinkable things, but if they do not have access to a firearm I think they are likely to do violent and unthinkable things anyway. Granted, a mass murder spree is more difficult with a knife, or a crossbow, or a knitting needle, but I don’t think it’s fair to blame the firearm.

    I also think it is a red herring to compare the rates of murders committed with firearms between Canada and Britain, and to comment that the rate is higher in Canada. I think the overall rate of murders in both jursdictions needs to be presented for context and proper consideration.

    Finally, this bill would still do nothing to address the use and access of guns by criminals. This bill is a waste of Senate and Parliamentary resources by a Senator who wants a last gasp of having a “legacy”.

  23. Don P 1 year ago

    Hon. Céline Hervieux-Payette:
    This bill has nothing to do with safe storage and handling of handguns! It is a typical hysterical reaction to a situation that was tragic and you are trying to capitalize on tragedy by taking away the legitimate rights of Canadian citizens who have been able to own a recreational handgun in their own home with the appropriate permit since 1932. Legislation C-42 provides effective laws governing the ownership, use, safe storage and transportation of handguns. You do not trust hundreds of thousands of law-biding citizens to follow the law. Your attitude is to crack down hard on law-biding citizens while ignoring the real problems of illegal handguns by the bad guys. Your proposed bill is loudly silent on that!
    The saving grace of your comedic bill is that it originates in the Senate, and like most simplistic private member bills, will die there. To pass second reading would be an embarrassment to the Senate and a waste of taxpayers’ money when there are more pressing, real issues at hand.

  24. Richard K 1 year ago

    First of Honourable Senator haven’t a clue about what a semi-automatic rifle there are a number that are used for hunting and are as you state are not shotguns. A Browning Bar II for example is a semi-automatic rifle in a 30.06 calibre designed to hold only 3 bullets and is used for hunting. A Browning semi-automatic shotgun used for hunting has to be plugged (by law if you knew anything at all about hunting regulations) to hold only 3 shots. I find it extremely ironic that the media and therefore the public knows very little about this planned change to the law. I do agree that military style weapons (ex. AK 47 and AR15’s) have no business in the conversation about hunting. But to make restricted those rifles and shotguns legitimate hunters/gun owners have used for decades is outright idiotic. I am a Police Officer, a gun owner and a hunter, i don’t for one minute believe you amendments will keep Canadians safe. The majority of guns used in crimes (including the cases you mentioned) are in the hand of criminals that haven’t legally acquired them in the first place or the mentally ill who should have had there guns taken away by a court of competent jurisdiction or the courts that don’t apply a proper sentence to those convicted of guns crimes. Why don’t you try to these problems first before going after the legal gun owners. But it is far easier for the narrow minded and un-informed to go after the law abider than the law breakers.

    • Ron H 1 year ago

      Call it what ever you want, but it still smells like controlling the ones that don’t need to be controlled, honest, law biding Canadian Citizens. This will do nothing to control the criminals, I doubt if there are any gang members that belong to gun clubs and if they did I doubt if they would store their weapons there. This Government needs to grow-up and start punishing the Criminals and the killers, not the hunters and gun collectors, oh I forgot, we are the only ones you can control.

  25. edmund dantes 1 year ago

    1) I admire the stand being taken by most, if not all of the people here… but sadly you guys are missing the point… these bills, and others like it, like c-51, are NEVER about criminals or terrorists, they are only about controlling you and me – period, full stop
    2) Heinlein once said, “I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.”
    I leave it to you to determine the best course of action regarding this bill

  26. Gary Zacher 1 year ago

    I am a retired Ontario Conservation Officer (C221) (43 years of service) the last 15 years of service I specialized in in-depth investigations which included hunting accidents. Your position that semi automatic firearms has no place in the sport of hunting is not support with fact and can only be described as YOUR point of view.

    At no time during my hunting accident investigations did I discover that the accident would have been avoided if the hunter was using a repeating action as apposed to a semi automatic.

    I have over 50 years of experience hunting with semi automatic hunting rifles and shot guns (shot gun legally restricted to 3 shell, Centre fire rifles restricted to 5, rim fire 22 restricted to 15 rounds). Most of your examples are military style rifles with high capacity magazines which are restricted and in most situations outlawed.

    I take exemption to your statement that your expert safety instructors support your view that semi automatic actions have no place in the sport of hunting and are unsafe. I spent 10 years administrating hunter exams in Ontario and would appreciate the names of these so called experts. Your position is more self serving than factual!!

    In stead of throwing mud at history of gun registration search for a program designed to help protect Canadians bill s223 isn’t the answer. It causes more problems than solutions!

    Criminals should be prohibited from access to any firearms under any circumstances. Persons convicted of any criminal act which involve a weapon should have more severe punishments and probation’s against access to firearms.

    Drunk driving causes more statistics that gun violence consider restricting vehicles to licensed garages!

    I have read the responses attached and percentage wise bill s223 isn’t favoring too well!

    Please respect the persons taking the time to respond!

    • Allen 10 months ago

      I totally agree with you sir. I have lived around firearms my whole life. Why is someone who likely never touched a firearm allowed to decide my fate.

  27. mike Arsenault 1 year ago

    How about only allowing the sale of true 5 shot magazines? The rivet is a bloody joke. Stop selling high capacity mags for Centerfires guns in Canada. This common sense fact seems to be overlooked by everyone. the law says 5,why can a person buy something with the potential to commit a criminal act? it is a sad joke,and they are unnecessary. I have news for the honourable senator,a semi-auto .22 is the perfect all around criminals gun. it can be cut down for concealment,high capacity mags are in abundance,the ammo is dirt cheap and a person can literally carry THOUSANDS of rounds on their person with ease. This proposed bill stinks of some desk-riding politicians theoretical view on use of firearms in Canada. Her use of multiple foreign shootings,and her opinions and comments on other countries politics and policies are a misguided attempt at fear mongering to the general public. oh,and by the way,a Type 56 rifle is a copy of a semi-auto SKS,not an AK-47,which uses high capacity mags and is select fire,not strictly semi-auto. A lot of her “facts” are way off in left field,IMHO. Mike Arsenault,Hunter.

    • Jeff 12 months ago

      Mike ARSENAULT, you are among the absolute worst enemies of responsible firearms owners in Canada. Read a book.

      • mike arsenault 4 weeks ago

        I have always been a responsible firearm owner. I was simply pointing out various facts that were ignored in this article. The law says 5 rounds for semi-auto centre fire and I think that with that in mind,5 round mags for SA rifles should be all that is offered. Anyone with half a brain can figure out the info that I wrote about SA .22’s and criminal chopping and use. How does this make me an “absolute worst enemy” of responsible gun owners? I do not alter ANY firearms in an illegal way,or condone that,I am simply saying that these idiots are out there,and are doing exactly that.

      • mike arsenault 4 weeks ago

        How so? I am very well read,and have legally owned and handled firearms safely for 35 years,I do not think I am irresponsible,or deserve your opinion of me.

  28. Richard 12 months ago

    2/3 of Canada is wilderness ,,, where I live in Southern Ontario we’re overwhelmed with turkey and deer ,,,, so the proposal is to use a 22 or a shotgun ,, ridiculous shooting a deer with the 22 falls on animal cruelty.
    We are law-abiding citizens 99.999 percent of the time,,, you should ban cars that kill mass people everyday.
    Are politicians that bord where they don’t know where to focus their attention.
    Is this bill to cause a diversion to where you really should be looking,,, stop illegal guns from coming from the US,,, stop the criminals that obtain illegal guns,,, now you have a real job to do,,, now go do it or I will never vote liberal again in my life

  29. Brian Carter 12 months ago

    I am a retired member of the RCMP. A firearms instructor for them and served in Haiti incharge of the Haitian Naotional Police firearmes program where I trained 5000 officers. I am the recipient of the Peace Keeping medal and served my country and upheld the Canadian values I thought were going to up held for me. Bill S223 clearly does not protect me, my values, my sport or the money iIhave invested in the sport. I do not hunt. I shoot IPSC which is a shooting sport. The senator speaks of gun loby rederic of which i do not buy either. I do realize that Canadians own guns for sport only and that is all i want. It want to keep my sport which is my only social life and keeps me mentally and physically fit and out of the health care syatem. She talks of only keeping one shooting sport. Hunting. I do not hunt and do not plan to. Under this legislation my sport and many othr shooting aports are gone. I also take great offense to having restrictions placed on me that are greater than a convicted violent offender on parole. I have not broken a law and never will. Also i find it very taugh to swallow that for 25 years I was trusted to carry a gun for work and now I am being treated as if I am a criminal and not trusted to even have one in my home stored in a safe and amunition locked up spearate. That makes me feel very much less of a human and certainly not a Canadian. This legislation is so morally, ethically and legally wrong it makes me sick. The issues this legislation is trying to solve will not be solved. The issues are clearly laid out by the senator. Poverty, mental illness, criminal lifestyles and culture, bullying etc. These are the areas that she and other government officials should be looking at to solve violence. (Violent crime has been dropping for many years now) removing shooting sports from 2 million Canadians will change nothing except alienate 2 million Canadians and have us become a burden on the health care system. There are 700 thousand registered hockey players in Canada. Lets try and eliminate that sport. We would have a revolution. I am horified by continued relentless attacks on my sport based on no information or facts. All I want is to be left alone to enjoy my sport and follow our current safe furearms legislation.

  30. Wayne Hampson 11 months ago

    Another attempt to take firearms out of the hands of law abiding citizens and give the government a “feel good” attitude about themselves thinking they have made Canada a safer place to live. As mentioned in a number of peoples comments I have been a law abiding gun owner for many years who is now being made out to be some type of criminal not considered responsible to store his own guns and ammunition safely. Please leave the law abiding gun owner alone and spend your resources on reducing criminal life styles and culture which is where the problems lie.

  31. Ken Rataul 11 months ago

    I like a few things about this bill, and there are a few things that are not so good as well.

    I will speak completely objectively and my words hold no bias to the fact that i am a firearm owner.

    Pro:
    inscription certificate. This is good because there is no long gun registry and therefore the word “registration” meaningless when infact your are not registering anything.

    Cons:
    Firearm storage. Although the idea of storing firearms away from your dewelling is great, and takes away the quick access to firearms for people who are making emotional decissions (mass murderers and people of thise type), it is wrong for the government to force someone to store their firarms at range. This is going to become a problem very quickly for a few reasons. 1. Criminals will now know where they can steal firearms from in mass quantity. You will just arm more criminals rather than law abiding citizens. 2. The ranges will not have the capacity to store all of the firearms and not all ranges will be able to build larger more secure facilities to accommodate the high volume of firearms. 3. People who own firearms store them at the own homes safely already so thier children may not have access to them, and other people whom are going to emotional stress and clouded judgement have the option to deposit thier firearm at a police station. 4. People with mental disabilities need to be banned from firearms possession, that’s a fact. Why not have it so an annual mental assessment is needed from a licenced psychologist in order to keep your licence, that would make much more sense to weed out the individuals that may be a concern to public safety.

    Semi-auto firearms, specifically known as shotguns. These firearms ahould not be allowed for hunting too. I can and I’m sure many others along with me can fire a pump action shotgun almost as fast a semi-auto. So there seems to be no point in putting both in separate categories.

    Again, objectively, I will hundred percent back the quote that “guns do not kill people, people kill people”. Guns just do it slightly easier than other methods. If a loaded firarms in placed on a table and pointed towards an individual, that firearm will not even hurt a fly in a million years. If you look at it objectively “Firearms only amplify the intentions of the user”. If someone chooses to injure or kill someone, that firearm will help that user accomplish that. If the user uses that firearm for target practice, that firearms will help that user place a projectile on the a given target and so on. You get the idea. It’s the intended use that matters, and not what type of firearm it is.

    People put diesel in their vehicles because the intention is to go from one place to another. Farmers use fertilizer for thier crops because the intention is to grow healthy crops. If you put both together they can injure and kill many people much faster, easier, cheaper than a firearm could. That does not mean you now ban diesel fuel and fertilizer.

    My last opinion:
    This bill has some good points however the execution is wrong. I hope that the laws stay the way they, or at most people be required to have psychological evaluations to obtain, maintain, and renew thier firearms licence.

    • Andrew Chapman 11 months ago

      I respect your opinion, however – with respect, as a seasoned hunter, I would like to point out that semi-auto firearms are more ethical as you can not follow through the same with a pump. Shooting water fowl with steel shot regularly requires a second or third shot to properly dispatch the bird.

      Inscription may be fine for those who only have bush or service firearms, but for those who collect, this is absolutely terrible.

  32. Maxwell Hess 11 months ago

    Every comment thinks this bill should be scrapped. Open your eyes to public opinion. The government doesn’t own the public. The public owns the government.

  33. jason 11 months ago

    so not needed and this should be scrapped. we need to solve the problems (IE: mental health, poverty and lack of education) not blame the gun.

  34. Andrew Chapman 11 months ago

    Seeing bills like this one are very upsetting to me as a responsible, contributing, tax paying citizen. I have been an avid marksman, recreational shooter, firearms collector and hunter all my life. To be frank, there are already far too many good people who feel like criminals due to society’s views on the topic. This bill is proof that people will attack something in which they know nothing of. I think we would all be much better off if people of this mind set would focus on ways to get illegal firearms off the streets, away from gangs and the mentally unstable. Seems like such a shame people go after good honest people.

    I do not support this bill. This bill does not represent the Canada I know and love.

  35. chris 11 months ago

    It is kinda weird sitting here alone … thinking about my childhood and teen years. long before I was 18. Back then . Canada set her own rules, made her own laws, and did not allow other Countries or organizations like the U.N. do so.
    Every morning I used to have to sing our national anthem, as well as god save the Queen, I was taught to be a Canadian first , above all other. I was taught loyalty to the People , the Queen, the country, to stand up for the rights of all. I was taught to stand up to bullies, to fight back not only for myself but also others. I was taught that all people were equal, female, male ,all races, and yes even different life styles, and religions.
    Here in Canada I was encouraged to take my rifle to the local High school shooting range,as well as the local gravel pits . As a young civilian the Canadian (Liberal) government encouraged as well as helped me learn to shoot , they had even setup and provided financial backing for great organizations (such as the D.C.R.A., and R.A.C.) to focus on shooting , supplied me with coaching , ammo, ranges, rifles, even transportation . I was also encouraged to purchase a rifle in the same caliber (even the same rifle, the F.N.and the Enfield) as the nations military used …I was encouraged to keep it at home.and to learn how to use it, The government even setup competitions with excellent prizes for not only winning but just for attending.
    I was also was encouraged to join the local Cadet corps.(1943 R.A.C.A. at our local high school) I was even offered high school credits for doing so. To learn citizenship , leadership, pride in our country, discipline, Here again it was .another liberal government who taught me to shoot. I started with the Enfield 22’s and then the national service rifle. I was taught the reason was because our forefathers realized Canada can not defend herself without it’s citizens being armed.
    Now our government labels people like me who understand the importance for a strong loyalty to our nation, respect for all people and their religions, life styles, and the private ownership of firearms ,, as radicals. as the ones who are out of date out of touch…The government does not trust us.. .does not trust me… honestly should it not be the other way around… Maybe we should start learning from our past and get back to the basics… back to being Canadian not passing bills that disrespect my past and freedoms.

  36. Guy Lefebvre CD 11 months ago

    To the best of my knowledge, this bill was scrapped when the senator retired..

  37. Stephan Jarche 11 months ago

    I would like to add my name and voice to the many that are represented on this forum. I don’t see any way that bill s-223 will improve the safety of Canadian citizens. By my count there were 3 incidences quoted in this letter of legal firearms used in violent crimes in Canada from 2006. As horrific as these events are, when you compare that to the number of law abiding citizens that possess firearms it would appear that current gun control laws are doing a fine job at making this country a safe place. Now compare the number of firearm crimes committed by unlawful criminals in Canada, and I’m sure that the statistics will point to where the focus really needs to be.

    You used the example of falling crime rate in Britain as an example. Take a look at this:
    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/apr/21/rate-england-wales-2015-rises-11
    “The murder rate in England and Wales rose by 11% to 573 homicides in 2015, providing fresh evidence that the long-term decline in violent crime may be over.”

    The government needs to stop the political posturing to try and make it look like their doing something productive.

  38. Michel Beaulieu 11 months ago

    If I am not mistaken, I believe we are in a country that has fought for freedom so, therefore we have a right to express our opinion. The government was elected by the people and should have respect for acquired rights. As far as gun control is concerned, gun owners have taken the responsibility to make sure their weapons are always stored and used safely through gun handling courses. The problem with the wrong use of firearms does not come from gun owners yet it seems that they are bearing all of the fault. There are already established rules and regulations concerning the safe use, storing and transport of restricted as well as non-restricted firearms that are clear and concise. It seems clear that the ultimate goal of the federal government is to eliminate all guns. This action goes against all the values our forefathers have fought to achieve and that have been passed down to us. Is this what Canada all about ? That is not what we have been taught. If this bill goes through it is the beginning of the end as far as our freedom is concerned.

  39. Robert Seaton 11 months ago

    While I support the principle of gun control, I can’t support this bill in its current form.. Storing guns at gun clubs and getting them moved by professional services is going to be awfully difficult in the many places that don’t have those facilities. It’s easy in a city or urban area, but not in many parts of rural Canada. Secondly, it makes no allowance for ownership and transportation of handguns by people who legitimately work in the bush and do work where carrying a long gun is impractical. Since I did work like that for years, I’m kind of sensitive to that issue. Thirdly, I find the notion of an “inscription certificate” to be vaguely defined, and an exercise in semantics. Why not just have a registry (yes, a registry!) for restricted weapons, which would be entirely in keeping with the stated spirit of the bill.

    • Eric 4 months ago

      Restricted weapons are already registered.
      Every current owner of a restricted firearm must have and carry a registration certificate.

  40. Ryan R 11 months ago

    This bill is ridiculous.

    While we’re at it let’s take away cars because some people decide to drink and drive resulting in many more deaths and injuries every year than shootings.

    Think about how many lives we would save! We don’t NEED cars, they are a luxory that some people like. People should just move closer to work and if they want to drive they should have to store their car and a special centralized race track.

  41. Kyle 11 months ago

    If we had the problems of the states this would make more sense, but we are not the US and we have a system that works, this is a hobby I love and a hobby that I’m well invested in, firearms, shooting range memberships, ammo, licencing, seems wrong to steal from lawful Canadians, and most of the rules being lobbied for seem like more of a cash grab than anything

  42. Q 10 months ago

    When do people start being held responsible for their own actions?

    • Q 10 months ago

      None of my guns ever did anything I didn’t make them do. Especially not to another human being.

  43. Martin 10 months ago

    To each their own… Or so the saying goes.

    When I first read about bill S-223 I was naturally shocked into disbelief that someone can propose such a strict and unrelenting amendment to the firearms act and criminal code. The idea of having my guns stored at a gun range and have them transported by a professional and approved transporter made the hair on the back of my neck rise. I was defensive and upset about the whole bill and determined to fight it with every fiber in my body.

    Fast forward to today…

    Having seen the devastation guns have caused and the utter destruction of human lives I was left numb. I was confused about my own gun ownership and having the strictest gun controls. Between a rock and a hard place is how I was. I was thinking about what Australia did and the effect this had on mass shooting in that country. How drastically gun violence declined. Let’s face it .. Guns were designed to kill. Whatever else you want to say does not change this fact. Whether it is game, varmint, dangerous animals or humans and even targets. GUNS ARE DESIGNED TO KILL. There is no argument here.

    I like shooting, I like target shooting and having the ability to go to my local range and spend an evening practicing a sport I sincerely enjoy. I want to keep on doing this and take my kids with me when they are older. I like to go with my friends and have a good time at the range shooting and talking about the different guns. I like taking them apart and marvel at the engineering and simplicity of the firearm.

    So when I reflected on all of this I came to the conclusion that this bill WAS intended to preserve the right to own and shoot my guns. That the senator truly does not want us to loose our rights to practice target shooting and hunting. To preserve the right of target shooting and hunting. There are some changes that needs to be made to this bill. For instance to allow bolt action rifles and shotguns to be transported by the owner for hunting purposes. But the rest is a small compromise to the alternative. And after recent events their are enough people to out vote the gun lobby on gun ownership. In Canada especially where we vote with our emotions. I can see the government proposing a total ban on guns in the near future, like many other countries. Australia, UK etc….

    And we will loose our right to practice this very enjoyable activity … forever.

  44. Shawn Hetzler 10 months ago

    I do not agree with bill s-223.
    Comments here are great, but email or phone your local MP.
    No judgement here, only encouragment to act. Armchair critics quit your slacking and be heard.

  45. Jamie 10 months ago

    I live in northern ontario where hunting and fishing are a way of life. Almost every gun owner in Canada is a law abiding citizen. Once again the government is trying to punish the masses for the actions of a few. I can’t support this bill and I strongly recommend that every law abiding Canadian comment on this ridiculous bill. By the way…who is going to refund the gun owners who will either have to surrender their semi-automatic guns or pay for a gun club membership IF there is a gun club near their community. Make your voice heard and fight for your rights Canada!

  46. W. Wagner 10 months ago

    I stopped at an Alberta Provincial camp ground July 15, 2016. One of the rules on the regulations board read, “no discharging of paint ball guns and sling shots as these are described as firearms”. The way I see it, then tennis rackets and golf clubs should be classified as firearms because they also propel a projectile. Will there ever be an end to new government regulations.

    • Eric 4 months ago

      Well, that campground was wrong. Neither paintball guns, nor slingshots meet the definitions as laid out in the firearms act.

  47. Troy Nason 10 months ago

    Alan Rock… Over 2 Billion dollars for 5 or 6 percent of long guns in Canada registered or turned in.
    Can we afford to do this again???

  48. David Brookes 9 months ago

    A couple of counter points to the senator’s arguements. 1. This bill may be unconstitutional. Although there is no right to bear arms in Canada, there is section 7 the right of security of the person. That right shall not be deprived except for fundamental justice (court cases). That is the same section that allows for self defense. Why can the government tell me how I’m allowed to defend myself? If I choose to have a legally obtained weapon in my house for defense and the government says I cannot they could breach section 7. They are also breaching section 11.d. The right to the presumption of innocence. They are branding gun owners as criminals without evidence. This seems that the government cannot trust its citizens. Under section 26 the charter states that the rights in the charter is not an exhastive list and others may exist. Remember rights are bestowed not on what citizens are allowed to do, but to restrict what governments can do. Nanny state is in itself a form of tyranny. People who say what I can and cannot do as a free ctizen clearly do not ubderstand the concept of freedom.
    2. The senator cites the 1990 liberal government knee jerk crackdown on firearms (the firearms act) with improving gun violence, but uses no evidence or numbers to back her claim. In fact Stats Canada data on tge subject shows that firearm homicides before and after the liberal government efforts was already bellow 1 out every 100,000 of the population ( non firearm homicides at tge same time was 1.8 per 100,000). In fact gun homicide and gum violence rates have decreased at the same rate as non-firearm violence rates. Also the gun deaths in Canada are currently at 0.49 per 100,000 people the highest was 1972 (at 1.26 per 100,000 people) and it has been declining since, regardless of legislation. Also out of those numbers only 21% of all gun deaths are due to criminal acts. Of those 80% were caused by an illegally obtained firearm. 81% of all violent crimes do not involve firearms.
    Unlike the senator, I am using actual facts by StatsCanada instead of sensationalizing and cherry picking.
    3. This legislation is overbroad. She is inncorrect that industry and sport must bend to whims of government. Government is responsible for inacting readonable limits and regulations, not draconian ones. This legislation is a solution looking for a problem.

  49. Craig 9 months ago

    Because the criminals and people will ill intent will follow your laws, why not ban any car with over 50hp or any drink with more than .5% alcohol?
    I can feed my family with my firearms, I sure can’t feed them with alcohol.
    Shouldn’t mental health be address first?

  50. Jonathan Wilfred Michelin 9 months ago

    I live in central Labrador, it’s taken me years to save to get parts for a target rifle, a ar platform, I also own two semi auto Tula arsenal surplus rifles, I hunt and fish, it’s a way of life, if this bill comes to pass then they will take all hunting firearms Aspell, we must stop this bill.
    Yes there are some people who have mental illness they do the shootings, we as responsible hunters and firearm owners we are law obiding and would if called upon defend our country, if they did arm us what do we have, nothing, I do not want to see this pass, it just plain cannot

  51. Dan 8 months ago

    Heart is in the right place but this bill is so far out of touch of reality its scary.

    Stopping illegal firearms from entering Canada and background checks on those who apply to RPAL should be priority. Not punishing those who want to go plinking with an SKS or similar.

    If a criminal wants to do bad things. They will. The statistics speak for themselves. Canadian Gun Owners are very responsible compared to other places in the world.

  52. Ralph Smallpiece 8 months ago

    I rarely hunt but I am involved in shooting sports. This bill will take away my right to enjoy my gun collection and sport shooting with handguns. I feel the Liberal government is attacking my lifestyle and find it very discriminating. Why not go after golfers. Golf clubs have been used in violent crimes as well. Make golfers store their golf clubs at the golf club. If you are going to discriminate against one sport, discriminate against them all…

  53. Gary 6 months ago

    Gary
    The gun laws we have in Canada work very well. Gun owners must take instruction and receive a license to obtain a gun. Guns must be properly stored with ammunition locked separately. Gun violence in Canada is very low by world standards, if gang activity and the suicides of very old and usually ill people are excluded from the statistics. Excluding those, homicides with legal firearms by licensed owners is miniscule for the size of the Canadian population. Politicians may find that forcing pograms on law-abiding citizens to enhance their political image will have a backlash. There are millions of Canadains who use guns responsibly, and that likely includes more than 99% of gun owners. A program to remove all of those from people’s homes would become another billion dollar political nightmare. Good luck with that!

  54. Jason 3 months ago

    How can anyone think this bill will help? Please try to explain how more laws decreases the incedence/chance of what are already illegal acts? Last I checked criminals do not obey the law already? I would dare say alcohol and knives take more lives in Canada than any firearm.

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