After the Trudeau government announced its gun ban by Order in Council on May 1st, the CSSA worked diligently to expose the many problems with the Liberal gun ban decree.
First, Tony Bernardo, our Executive Director, gave interviews to print, radio and television media across Canada, including CBC, CTV, Global News, and many others.
Second, our entire team worked to thoroughly understand what the government’s gun ban by Order in Council actually meant for gun owners. It wasn’t as simple as the government pretended, that’s for sure.
As we figured out what each section of the OIC gun ban meant, Tony Bernardo spoke with members of Parliament from across the political spectrum to make sure they understood the growing list of implications contained in the flawed ministerial edict.
Third, on May 2, 2020, we joined with other major organizations, including Canada’s firearm industry association, CSAAA, the NFA and the CCFR to demand Minister Bill Blair’s resignation.[i]
Fourth, we issued news releases as we uncovered each new sinkhole in SOR/2020-96, Bill Blair’s gun ban by Order in Council.
Legal counsel Ed Burlew LL.B. issued an expert legal opinion on the 20mm bore diameter issue, which explained how the government, through SOR/2020-96, banned most 12-gauge and 10-gauge shotguns with removable chokes.[ii]
While the government pretended this wasn’t true, this legal opinion forced the RCMP, for the first time in history, to explain to gun dealers and licensed gun owners how they would now measure bore diameter. They conveniently ignored the fact this contradicted decades of RCMP policy and their current definitions document on the issue.
Our efforts to expose the flaws in the Liberal government’s gun ban by Order in Council led the U.S. based National Shooting Sports Foundation to issue an industry-wide warning to American firearm manufacturers about selling guns into Canada.[iii]
We exposed the RCMP’s use of SOR/2020-96 to ban over 30 makes and models of bolt-action, pump action and semi-automatic shotguns as Prohibited firearms by making the absurd assertion they are “variants” of the AR-15.
We exposed Bill Blair’s repeated and blatant lies to Canadians on the shotgun issue.[iv]
With the help of a second expert legal opinion from Ed Burlew LL.B., we exposed how the government banned shotguns and many rifles using the muzzle energy parameter of SOR/2020-96.[v]
No CSSA Lawsuit?
The one thing we intentionally did not do is announce legal action against the government over this gun ban by Order in Council.
There are three primary reasons for this decision.
First and foremost, the CSSA believes the ultimate solution to this gun ban is political, not legal.
It will likely be three to five years (and many large stacks of money) before any of these legal challenges to the gun ban by OIC are decided. By then, every firearm listed in SOR/2020-96 may already be long gone.
Second, there will be a federal election long before the expiration of the government’s amnesty period on these guns. In all likelihood, that election will be this fall.
Elections Canada is asking third-party stakeholders for their opinion of holding a federal election “in COVID times.” This is not a question Elections Canada would ask if the next federal election was still years away.
Third, the CSSA believes our members’ resources can be put to far more efficient use by working with and funding one or more of the existing legal challenges already announced.
To those ends…
CSSA Supports Two Legal Challenges
The CSSA examined in detail all of the possible actions and current legal actions available to us to determine which case or cases provide the greatest opportunity to set a favourable decision for our community. Using our considerable experience in firearms legislation and law, we have determined the two 117.15 actions below represent the best chance of timely success for our members and their hard-earned dollars.
Public Interest Litigants Judicial Review
Cassandra Parker / K.K.S. Tactical Supplies Ltd. Judicial Review
Toronto lawyer Arkadi Bouchelev represents the Ontario Landowners Association in their judicial review.
For those who remember the Peter Sedge case, Mr. Bouchelev is the attorney who successfully defended Mr. Sedge and negotiated a settlement between Mr. Sedge and the Toronto Police Service for their gross misconduct. Mr. Bouchelev has welcomed the CSSA’s considerable expertise and assistance.
Ottawa criminal defence lawyer Solomon Friedman represents Ms. Parker and K.K.S. Tactical in her action.
Both attorneys are well-known, talented and experienced in firearms law. In our opinion, these two judicial reviews provide our community with the best opportunity to strike down the May 1, 2020, Order in Council SOR/2020-96.
Please use the donation links below if you would like to financially support these cases as well.