Canada to fast-track ban handgun imports effective Aug 19 until permanent freeze comes into effect

Representative image of Hand Gun Unsplash Alejo Reinoso

Canada’s federal government plans to accelerate a ban on the import of handguns into the country without Parliament’s approval using a regulatory measure that comes into effect in two weeks, announced jointly on Aug 5 by Canada’s Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino and Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly

“My top priority as Minister is keeping Canadians safe in their communities…prevention, action at our borders, a ban on assault-style weapons and Bill C-21 – Canada’s most significant action on gun violence in a generation.” said Marco in a news release.

The change will last until a permanent freeze is passed in Parliament and comes into force.

Gun control legislation was tabled by the government in May that includes a national freeze on the importation, purchase, sale, and transfer of handguns in Canada.

That law that did not pass before Parliament took its summer break is set to be debated again when MPs return to Ottawa in the fall.

This temporary ban reportedly implies disabing individuals and businesses to import hand guns into Canada, subject to narrow exceptions that mirror those in Bill C-21. These restri ctions which will take effect on August 19th, 2022 will last until the national freeze comes into force.

In the meantime, Joly said she has the authority to ban any import or export permit in Canada.

“We know that one Canadian killed by gun violence is one too many…The import ban announced today will help to keep guns stay off our streets as we work towards implementing Bill C-21, reducing gun violence in the immediate term,” said Joly in the news release.

The temporary ban will prevent businesses from importing handguns into Canada, with a few exceptions that mirror those in the legislation tabled in May.

This change was announced by Mendicino and Joly outside of a Catholic elementary school in the Toronto suburb of Etobicoke, as children kicked soccer balls around in the field behind them.