Federal Government Re-Visiting Amendments to Bill C-21

The Federal Government released their recent amendments to Bill C-21 and there are still very much some areas of concern. It is important to note that these amendments have not yet come into effect.

The official wording will no longer lead to the immediate ban of existing rifles HOWEVER it will prohibit the manufacturing and purchasing of new rifles that meet the following definition:

“A firearm that is not a handgun that:

(i) discharges center-fire ammunition in a semi-automatic manner

(ii) was originally designed with a detachable cartridge magazine with a capacity of six cartridges or more, and

(iii) is designed and manufactured on or after the day on which this paragraph comes into force.”

The definition of semi-automatic that they are considering to put in place is the following:

“semi-automatic, in respect of a firearm, means a firearm that is equipped with a mechanism that, following the discharge of a cartridge, automatically operates to complete any part of the reloading cycle necessary to prepare for the discharge of the next cartridge.”

This definition may cause some firearms that are not semi-automatic to be classified as semi-automatic if they have some kind of convenience feature (like a pump-action shot gun that uses some of the recoil energy to open the action) which may count as a step depending on how the regulation is interpreted.

They also included a provision into the regulation that will force the review of the amendments and it’s wording by the House of Commons Committee in 5-years from the date that the amendment comes into force. This will give them the opportunity to review and make further amendments, which may lead to the ban of existing firearms.

There are a number of areas of concern that NOTO will be keeping a close eye on as the Government releases more of the wording of the amendments they are looking to set into place.