Parliament for 2013
Richmond Electoral District
Due to multiple media requests to comment on Bill C-391, An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act (repeal of long-gun registry), MP Alice Wong is making the following statement:
“On September 22, the House of Commons voted 153-151 to accept a recommendation from the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security to not proceed any further with Bill C-391 – a bill that would have repealed the Long Gun Registry. Along with 150 other members of parliament, I voted against this motion as I wanted to see Bill C-391 come back to the House of Commons for third reading.
There has been some misunderstanding, even among members of the media, that this bill would scrap the firearms registry in its entirety. This is not true, as it would only exempt non-restricted firearms such as hunting rifles from registration. Restricted firearms, such as handguns, would still require mandatory registration.
Although I personally received minimal correspondence from constituents either for or against Bill C-391, nevertheless I supported it since I still believe the Long Gun Registry is an onerous bureaucratic burden on those who use firearms for recreational purposes. It has come at great cost to the taxpayer and its effectiveness is highly questionable.
At the same time, it is important to emphasize that whether firearms of any type are registered or not, there are strict laws governing their usage in Canada. The Conservative government has been and remains focused on enacting tough laws for criminals, especially those that use guns to commit criminal acts.
As an example, in the last Parliament the government introduced the Tackling Violent Crime Act, which included minimum sentences for crimes involving firearms. In the last session, Parliament passed into law Bill C-14, which introduced three new offenses for reckless discharges of firearms. In addition, for this session the government has seven new bills to help catch criminals and keep them off our streets.
No matter what the status of the firearm registry is, we will be tough on criminals, whether they choose to commit their crimes with firearms or not.”
Filed under: Commentary