On May 15, 2009, Candice Hoeppner, Conservative M.P. for Portage-Lisgar, Manitoba, introduced Bill C-391, An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act (repeal of the long-gun registry).
This is the third gun bill currently in Parliament, but the only one that has a real chance at passing and finally scrapping the long-gun registry. Bill C-301, introduced earlier this year by Saskatchewan M.P. Garry Breitkreuz, and Bill S-5, introduced in the Senate on behalf of the Minister of Public Safety, have flaws in them that has resulted in a lack of support from Members of Parliament and the firearms community in general. Neither of those bills is expected to proceed. Bill C-391, which is likely the last chance to achieve the scrapping of the long-gun registry, is a simple and straightforward bill that does one thing only — abolish the long-gun registry.
With the Conservatives in a minority situation, it will take at least 12 members of the opposition parties to vote in favor of the bill to have it passed. Three members of the NDP party, two from Ontario and one from Nova Scotia, have already publicly declared their support for the bill. There are a number of other opposition members in Ontario and across the country who will likely support the bill, but they need to hear from the outdoor community.
We have included a downloadable list of Ontario Liberal and NDP M.P.’s, the ridings they represent and the phone number (and where provided, an email address) for their constituency offices. It is important that they hear from firearms owners in their constituency who want them to support the bill. Quite simply, the more calls they get, the more likely they are to support it.
It is critical that O.F.A.H. members, their families and friends, look at the list, and call the constituency office of the local Liberal or NDP M.P., and ask them to support Bill C-391.
If a Conservative M.P. represents your riding, you don’t have to call; they will be supporting the bill. Both John Rafferty and Bruce Hyer, NDP members for Thunder Bay, issued a press release in support of the bill. If either of these is your Member, please call them to say â€œthanks.â€ For the others, particularly for the other NDP members in northern Ontario, they need to hear from you, frequently, and in large numbers, to convince them that this is the right thing to do.
The long-gun registry, which was supposed to cost no more that $2 million when introduced, will have cost the taxpayers of Canada $2 billion by 2012. The Auditor General of Canada has stated that the registry is a mess, and that the Canadian Firearms Centre has failed to demonstrate the long-gun registry has enhanced public safety, prevented gun crime, or saved lives. Several large police associations have also declared the registry to be a waste, many are supporting Bill C-391, and the suggestion that all police support the registry is simply false. Every major poll in the last six years has supported scrapping the long-gun registry. Criminals don’t register firearms, and because of this, the registry was doomed to failure from the start.
We also wish to remind you of the national online petition at www.scrapthelonggunregistry.com, which can also be accessed through the O.F.A.H. website www.ofah.org Please go online and sign the petition. These petitions will soon be delivered to the House of Commons, and the more who sign, the more influence we will have on the vote to support Bill C-391.
This is quite simply our best, and perhaps final, chance to scrap the long-gun registry. Please call opposition M.P.’s in your riding or immediate area in support of Bill C-391.