SARM opposes recent amendments to Bill C-21

Amendments to Bill C-21 has firearms owners like hunters and farmers upset.
Ray Orb, president of the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM), is adding his organization to the ones who think the bill goes to far.

SARM in a media release said the changes would “criminalize Saskatchewan residents overnight.”
Many hunters have semi-automatic long arms and handguns for a reason, Orb said, and they’ve had them for years, taking the appropriate safety courses all along.

“So they are legal gun owners, so they are not the ones that should be targeted by the federal government,” said Orb in an interview. “Instead, we feel the federal government should be going after illegal gun owners or people that are bringing in guns illegally from outside the country, and they could be spending their money in much better ways.”

Orb said the SARM board of directors will be meeting on this issue, and hopes to meet with the chief firearms registrar in Saskatchewan to discuss the issue.

he said they haven’t heard from their members about the most recent amendments tot he gun control bill.

“We’re being pro-active because we’ve heard from our members in the past that it should be hands-off on behalf of the federal government as far as the use and possession of these rifles and shotguns that the federal government is exactly out to ban,” Orb said.

Orb said it was frustrating because they’ve been told in the past by the federal government that the bill wasn’t going to target ranchers and gun owners.

“We met with Minister (Bill) Blair not too many years ago when he was in the position as minister (Marco) Mendicino was in, and he reassured us that they were not targeting legal gun owners in Saskatchewan (and) they were not targeting ranchers, farmers and hunters. But now it seems the federal government is doing exactly that.”

SARM said that firearms are a valuable tool in rural Saskatchewan, and the bill doesn’t do anything to improve safety in rural Saskatchewan. They estimated Saskatchewan has 115,000 firearms owners, and that 75,000 of them would be penalized and criminalized under the amendment.





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