2020- 2022 Policy Process | Green Party of Canada
Where GPC membership collaborates to develop our policies
G21-P052 Safe and Accountable Firearms Ownership and Usage
Ratification Vote Results: Adopted
The GPC acknowledges and supports Canada’s safe and accountable firearms owners by transferring regulation of non-criminal activities from the Criminal Code to a responsive administrative regulatory framework; the collaborative development of clear and equitable evidence-based firearms control regulations; and the strengthening of laws which seek to reduce criminal firearms-related violence.
To reset the GPC’s relationship and reputation with Canada’s 2.2 million licensed firearms owners and other public members by creating a responsive administrative regulatory framework for Canada’s safe and accountable firearms owners.
Will earn the support and votes of up to 2.2 million licensed firearms owners, improve compliance with regulatory requirements, enhance transparency of decision-making, protect privacy, and allow law enforcement to focus on criminal misuse of firearms.
Supporting Comments from Submitter
The following evidence argues that gun control is effective but that Canadian firearms regulations fail to protect Canadians and waste taxpayer dollars. It shows how the Liberal and Conservative parties use gun control as wedge politics to win votes rather than keeping Canadians safe. In order to stop the horrific suffering caused by violent gun crime and firearms-related suicide, current attitudes towards firearms need to be re-examined and more research is needed to create informed policies.
1. Beauchamp, Zack. “A huge international study of gun control finds strong evidence that it actually works.” Vox. Nov 6, 2017.
This article discusses an international study that examined 130 studies published between 1950 to 2014 in 10 countries and supports the notion that firearms control can have a positive social effect by reducing firearms-related deaths (e.g. suicides), lower rates of intimate partner homicides and unintentional firearms-related deaths with children. A link to the international study "What Do We Know About the Association Between Firearm Legislation and Firearm-Related Injuries? (2016) - Epidemiologic Reviews" is included in the article.
2. National Police Federation. “Gun Violence and National Safety in Canada.” (November 23, 2020)
To validate the assertion that the current firearms regulation regime does not work due to politicization, the National Police Federation (i.e. RCMP labour union) released a position statement that states that the “costly” Order-in-Council PC 2020-298 (May 1, 2020), which banned over 1,500 types of “assault-style” weapons, targeted "legal firearm owners" and did not address "current and emerging themes or urgent threats to public safety" which included "criminal activity, illegal firearms proliferation, gang crime, illegal guns crossing the border, or the criminal use of firearms".
3. Joan Bryden. "Liberals, Tories lay groundwork for turning gun control into wedge issue" Citytv (The Canadian Press). April 29, 2018.
This newspaper article highlights how firearms control policies are a major issue for Canadian voters and how the Liberals and Conservatives are using the issue as a tool for wedge politics rather than offering balanced solutions that meet the needs of Canada’s safe and responsible firearms community and effectively enhance public safety.
4. Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the House of Commons. "Chapter 10: Department of Justice - Costs of Implementing the Canadian Firearms Program." December 2002. https://www.oag-bvg.gc.ca/internet/docs/20060504ce.pdf
The Auditor General's report provides an example of how current firearms control legislation is poorly implemented (i.e. lacking transparency and costing over $1 billion by 2004/2005 instead of providing a promised $2 million surplus).
5. Ferguson, Lorna and Koziarski, Jacek, "What Do We Know About Firearms in Canada?: A Systematic Scoping Review" (2019). Sociology Publications. P.50
This academic journal found that there is a significant gap in firearms-related research which impedes evidence-based policy making. Accordingly, this deficiency highlights why it is not appropriate to prescribe specific firearms regulations in the GPC policy proposal process now but rather to propose a process that allows collaborative firearms regulation development that includes relevant subject matter experts (e.g. public safety experts, mental health experts, firearms owners, law enforcement, victims rights groups, academics, etc.).
6. The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms. "Concerns Regarding the New Regulations on Firearms" July 13, 2020.
This article explains Federal Court legal action initiated by the Canadian Coalition of Firearms Rights which challenges Order-in-Council PC 2020-298 (May 1, 2020) which allowed the Liberal government to criminalize and confiscate approximately 1,500 formerly-legal types of firearms and "variants" which were legally acquired. It is an example of how decisions about firearms are made without consultation with the firearms community.
7. Susana Ferreia. "Portugal’s radical drugs policy is working. Why hasn’t the world copied it?" The Guardian. December 5, 2017.
This newspaper article highlights three pillars of Portugal’s drug decriminalization policy that can be applied to decriminalization of safe and accountable firearms ownership and usage in Canada: Firearms are neither good nor bad – there are only healthy and unhealthy relationships with firearms, inappropriate firearms usage conceals underlying issues, and that the total eradication of firearms-related violence is an impossible goal.
Ecological Wisdom, Sustainability, Participatory Democracy, Social Justice, Respect for Diversity, Non-Violence
Relation to Existing Policy
This proposal would rescind and replace current GPC policy 1998 – Justice, G10-p14 Gun Control
List of Endorsements
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