More than 1,600 people responded to the trespass survey organized by the government of Saskatchewan.
The survey, which Saskatchewan residents had from August 9th to October 2nd to respond to, saw responses come in through mail, email and an online questionnaire.
Justice Minister Don Morgan said about two-thirds of the responses were in favour of a reverse onus on trespassing on private property.
“Most people will be aware there’s an onus on the land owner on rural property to sign the property if you don’t want hunters or people coming onto your property,” Morgan said. “The survey strongly supported reversing that onus that you no longer had to do that.”
Morgan said he’s advising people to remain with the status quo until a bill is passed.
“The practice right now is, if you want to hunt on somebody’s property, you obtain consent, if you want to go on somebody’s property with your ATV, you obtain consent,” Morgan said. “That’s the status quo, and I’d encourage people (to) comply with the existing law, don’t look for any changes one way or the other until a bill has been passed.”
However, justice critic Nicole Sarauer said while the necessary consultation was done, she has heard it wasn’t widespread enough.
“It’s hard to continue having this discussion about legislation we haven’t seen yet,” Sarauer said. “The government needs to table the legislation so that we can have a broader discussion about what the impacts of the legislation will be, and what problem this will actually solve.”
Sarauer added without legislation, she’s unsure if it will go to solve the rural crime problem, or if it will just further handcuff hunters and fishermen in the province.