New anti-handgun legislation is expected to be tabled this afternoon, as the Trudeau Liberals act to restrict access to firearms in Canada.
The bill will be presented by Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino following question period, prior to a press conference with the prime minister and other officials from the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa.
Legislation will likely aim to revive measures that did not pass before the 2021 federal election. These policies include mandatory "buybacks" on guns deemed to be "assault-style" firearms, as well as more restrictions on high-capacity firearm magazines.
The Trudeau Liberals are also aiming to work with any province that wants to ban handguns.
Handgun ownership is likely to be a target for the Liberals, with many major cities in Canada dealing with an increase in handgun crime. These firearms, however, are almost always illegally smuggled in from the United States, with some police officials saying that banning handguns would have little to no effect on crime.
In 2019, Vancouver police Chief Adam Palmer said that Canada already had extremely strong firearms regulation in place and that no further action was required. He said that the vast majority of gun crimes, especially those with handguns, are committed using illegal guns and that it makes no sense to ban an already prohibited weapon.
"In every single case there are already offences for that. They're already breaking the law and the criminal law in Canada addresses all of those circumstances," said Palmer. "The firearms laws in Canada are actually very good right now. They're very strict."
He continued: "There will always be an influx of guns from the United States into Canada. Heroin is illegal in Canada, too, but we have heroin in Canada.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said last week that there was "unity" in Canada on the topic of gun control.
"That unity is what we're going to move forward with as we take new steps in the coming weeks on gun control," said Trudeau on Tuesday.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford has already said that his province would not put into place any kind of handgun ban.
"I've been very clear on my stance: We put $185 million into fighting gangs and guns. What we need to do is continue to invest and support our police," Ford said on Wednesday, reports CTV News.
"I know one thing, there's two things: invest in our police officers. Invest in the gangs and guns division of the police and give them the tools to go out there and arrest these bad guys," he said.
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