The BCWF strongly opposes the federal government’s unwarranted prohibition of normal hunting firearms that were claimed to be “assault-style” weapons under Regulation SOR/2020-96. Our position has been bolstered by a recently published report by the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters which shows that almost all of the previously non-restricted firearms prohibited under SOR/2020-96 are “reasonable and proportionate for hunting.”
The report by the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters is a comprehensive analysis entitled, “What firearms are reasonable and proportionate for hunting in Canada, and examines the previously non-restricted firearms that were prohibited under SOR/2020-96.”
- The findings undermine the federal government’s claims that the so-called “assault-style” weapons prohibited by Regulation SOR/2020-96 were “unreasonable and disproportionate” for hunting.This claim is false. The OFAH report shows that almost all of the previously non-restricted firearms that were prohibited are in fact used by Canadians in legal hunting activities.
- In May 2020, under Regulation SOR/2020-96, the Government of Canada by Order-in-Council prohibited 1500 makes and models of firearms as “unreasonable and disproportionate” for hunting. The cost of the prohibitions authorized under Regulation SOR/2020-96 could be billions.
- The Parliamentary Budget Office estimated that the cost of compensation would be between $47 and $756 million. The wide range is partly due to the differing estimates of how many firearms are included in the ban, and partly due to how much compensation the government is willing to pay. The RCMP estimates 150,000 firearms are banned and the CSAAA estimates 518,000 firearms. The so-called “buy back” of the non-restricted firearms prohibited by SOR/2020-96 uniquely targets firearms that were lawfully possessed before May 1, 2020.
- The PBO’s cost estimate does not include administrative costs, which have been projected to be between $1.6 and $5 billion, excluding costs of storage and destruction of collected firearms, consulting, government advertising, and compensation to museums for confiscated historical military equipment.
- The Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association (CSAAA) estimates that retailers will lose almost $1 billion in inventory that can’t be sold or returned to suppliers due to the Order-In-Council.
The OFAH is the largest, non-profit, fish and wildlife conservation-based organization in Ontario, representing 100,000 members, subscribers, and supporters, and 725 member clubs. OFAH members are anglers, hunters, trappers, recreational shooters, and conservation-minded; many are all the above. The OFAH is the lead organization of the National Fishing and Hunting Collaborative (NFHC; www.ofah.org/nfhc), a group of 12 non-partisan, non-profit provincial/territorial fishing and hunting organizations, including the BCWF, that work collaboratively to provide national leadership on important conservation issues and a voice for more than 375,000 Canadians from coast-to-coast-to-coast.
Fraser Institute: Trudeau government ‘buy back’ firearms plan may cost up to $6.7 billion