Police Support Extensive for Legislation to End Long-Gun Registry
OTTAWA, ON – Candice Hoeppner, Member of Parliament for Portage—Lisgar, said today that her Private Member’s Bill to end the long-gun registry has the support of various police associations, front-line officers and Chiefs of Police.
“The Opposition’s main argument in maintaining the long-gun registry has been that the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) and the Canadian Police Association (CPA) support it,” said Hoeppner. “I have spoken with many Chiefs of Police and front-line officers who disagree with their associations and unequivocally support my bill to end the long-gun registry.”
Bill C-391 is in second reading in the House of Commons and is scheduled for second hour of debate next week. A vote on the bill will take place in the House of Commons on November 4, 2009.
“From my discussions with Chiefs of Police from across the country, it is clear that support for the long-gun registry by front-line officers is far from unanimous,” said Hoeppner. “It is time for the Opposition to listen to what the men and women who risk their lives every day are saying – the long-gun registry is not useful.”
Recently, Hoeppner met with Chiefs of Police from major centres to discuss crime and public safety issues. Many of the officers with whom Hoeppner spoke stated that the resources wasted on the registry would be better applied in measures to fight crime and stop criminals.
Delaney Chisholm, New Glasgow Chief of Police commented: “I share your concerns and I am on the Nova Scotia Chiefs Executive, and have asked them not to support the legislation for registering of long-guns.”
“As the Chief of the Winkler Police Service I would like to offer my support for Bill C-391,” said Chief Rick Hiebert. “The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police does not speak for all active police chiefs when supporting the long-gun registry. I personally believe it is time to put an end to the long-gun registry and use that money to focus on criminals and illegal gun activity.”
These statements by Canadian police officers show that support for efforts to end the long-gun registry is far greater than the Presidents of the Canadian Police Association and Canadian Chiefs of Police Association would have the public believe.
An RCMP Corporal (who requested to remain anonymous for fear that his statements would affect his job) offered this assessment: “I certainly do not understand how the CAPC can claim that the registry is a useful tool. I think their doing so is more a statement of how long it has been since any of them has been in touch with front-line policing. I have never once in my career found the registry to be a useful in solving a single crime, and can say without a doubt that I have never witnessed the long-gun registry prevent a crime.”
Robert H.D. Head, Assistant Commissioner (rtd.), RCMP said: “As a life member of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, I have watched with interest their endorsement of the long-gun firearms registry since it was first introduced in the House of Commons as Bill C-68. At that time, it was reported that Bill C-68 was wholeheartedly endorsed by the CACP. Nothing could have been further from the truth. Although the Chiefs did have majority support, it was far from ‘wholehearted’. At that time and apparently continuing to this day, their endorsement seems more political than practical. Members of Parliament from all political parties have an opportunity to right a wrong and support Bill C-391. Let us all hope that they have the intestinal fortitude to act accordingly.”
For additional information, contact:
Cameron Friesen, Executive Assistant to Candice Hoeppner