Canada tables bill to Implement national freeze on handguns

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The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, announced the introduction of new legislation to strengthen gun control in Canada and keep Canadians safe from gun violence. Bill C-21 puts forward some of the strongest gun control measures in over 40 years.

These new measures include:

  • Implementing a national freeze on handguns to prevent individuals from bringing newly acquired handguns into Canada and from buying, selling, and transferring handguns within the country.
  • Taking away the firearms licenses of those involved in acts of domestic violence or criminal harassment, such as stalking.
  • Fighting gun smuggling and trafficking by increasing criminal penalties, providing more tools for law enforcement to investigate firearms crimes, and strengthening border security measures.
  • Addressing intimate partner violence, gender-based violence, and self-harm involving firearms bycreating a new “red flag” law that would enable courts to require that individuals considered a danger to themselves or others surrender their firearms to law enforcement, while protecting the safety of the individual applying to the red flag process, including by protecting their identity. In addition, the government will invest $6.6 million to help raise awareness of the new law and provide supports to vulnerable and marginalized groups to navigate the provisions.

In addition to this new legislation, the Government of Canada will require long-gun magazines to be permanently altered so they can never hold more than five rounds and will ban the sale and transfer of large capacity magazines under the Criminal Code.

“One Canadian killed by gun violence is one too many. I’ve seen all too well the tragic cost that gun violence has in our communities across the country. Today, we’re proposing some of the strongest measures in Canadian history to keep guns out of our communities and build a safer future for everyone,” said Prime minister Justin Trudeau.