“Action is needed now to tackle this growing gang and gun violence in Auckland and Firearm Prohibition Orders are part of the solution,” says Simeon Brown, New Zealand National Party’s Police Spokesperson.
“Firearms Prohibition Orders (FPOs) would give police greater powers to take firearms of violent criminals. This is a sensible piece of legislation that would go some way to keeping the public safe, but the Government continues to refuse to support it.”
Simeon Brown has a valid point.
After reading his proposed legislation, I don’t understand why the New Zealand government opposes Arms (Firearms Prohibition Orders) Amendment Bill (No 2) either.
Simeon Brown’s proposed system would give police the authority “to search the persons, vehicles, and premises of specified serious and violent gang members for firearms at any time.”
This is the polar opposite of Canada’s failed Firearm Prohibition Order system, and is a change for which I continue to advocate here.
New Zealand’s progressive government seems determined to follow Canada’s failed methodology where violent criminals are ignored while licensed gun owners bear the brunt of the government’s anger.
The Canadian Experience
Here in Canada, a Firearms Prohibition Order is just a piece of paper issued by a judge. Useless pieces of paper do not stop a criminal with violent intentions from carrying out those intentions.
Canada’s version of a Firearm Prohibition Order serves two purposes, neither of which stop the subject of an FPO from committing more offences with illegal guns.
The primary purpose of a Canadian Firearms Prohibition Order is to notify the Chief Firearms Officer of the offender’s province so they can revoke the offender’s Possession and Acquisition Licence, if they have one.
This is codified in Section 89 of the Firearms Act.
89 Every court, judge or justice that makes, varies or revokes a prohibition order shall have a chief firearms officer informed without delay of the prohibition order or its variation or revocation.
If the subject of a Firearms Prohibition Order is not a client, to use the vernacular of the Canadian Firearms Program, and does not hold a Firearms Possession and Acquisition License the judicial notice is simply ignored.
The secondary purpose of a Firearms Prohibition Order is to allow the police to charge the offender with another crime – “possession of a firearm or ammunition contrary to prohibition order” – when they break the law the next time.
With regards to Firearm Prohibition Orders, nothing in Canadian law assists police to “give police greater powers to take firearms of violent criminals.”
If the newly-prohibited individual possessed guns legally, the individual’s Possession and Acquisition Licence is revoked, any Firearm Registration Certificates they possess are revoked, and any firearms in their possession are seized and destroyed.
If the newly-prohibited individual does not possess guns legally, then police can only seize what they can find.
After the initial arrest, Canada’s Firearm Prohibition Order system does nothing to prevent violent criminals with an FPO from obtaining more illegal guns.
Nor does Canada’s Firearm Prohibition Order system provide any mechanism to track these individuals, conduct searches of them and their homes to ensure they comply with the prohibition order.
Hope for New Zealand
Simeon Brown’s proposed Firearm Prohibition Order system will give police the power to stop known repeat offenders and search them, their vehicles and their homes to ensure they abide by those prohibition orders.
Only a fool would oppose such common-sense measures.
Here in Canada, the violence committed by repeat offenders with illegal guns continues unabated.
Dennis Young, Canada’s foremost firearms researcher, learned that from 2014 to 2018 police arrested 5,550 criminals who were already prohibited from possessing firearms – an average of 1,110 per year.
I’ve been tracking Firearm Prohibition Order violators via news reports for over a year now, and the results are not hopeful. If the numbers uncovered by Dennis Young’s research still hold true today, only about half of these arrests are reported by the media.
No politician from any political party shows the slightest interest in reforming Canada’s failed Firearm Prohibition Order system, least of all the Minister of Public Safety. His only interest appears to be confiscating firearms from licensed owners while he pays lip service to stopping violent criminals.
This is, to be kind, distressing.
Don Sutherland says
Thanks Christopher for another “spot on” article on Firearm Prohibition orders and the governments obtuse approach. I sent an email to all MPs after the 1 May Order in Council, in which several responses from Liberals, NDP or Bloc MPs contained the statement “if we can prevent even one death” – if this statement was truly supported and actioned with genuine legislation to enhance public safety and mental health by the government, then the topics of your articles would vastly different. Unfortunately, the Minister of “Disinformation and Exaggeration” Bill Blair, and Emperor Trudeau are totally disregarding their promise for legislation based on “facts” as proven time and again in their ignoring the facts, which fully support your articles, by Stats Canada. It is shamefully that it actually required an member of the opposition to introduce the “988” for Suicide Prevention, while the government possess to expend millions of dollars to unnecessarily take property from legal owners. Monies if spent wisely, would enable the “988” to be implemented as well as other genuine initiatives to reduce illegal possession and use of firearms.
Christopher di Armani says
Thanks Don. And the 988 issue is one that all sides are using as a political football, much to my great disgust. That’s a topic for another commentary, to be sure.
Don Sutherland says
Roger on the 988 being the most easiest attainable low hanging fruit and it’s general use. I used it many because it is so simplistic that it doesn’t require grey matter engagement to dispute the political assertion of “one life” protection – especially with the yearly mental health drive.
peter bolten says
Anne McLellan was very obtuse about this when she was Minister of the day, had the nerve to exclaim that ” the debate is over”, …actually she shrieked that one at us on television.
Paul Martin’s public statement…” we’ll have to look at that…”.
Christopher di Armani says
The debate is not over simply because some shrill politician says it is. That’s not how democracy works. That we’re still here pointing out all the failings of these laws should, one would hope, remove the scales from their eyes…
Clive Edwards says
Only lizards have scales on their eyes. People like tugboat Annie. The rest of us can see clearly that the absolute moral and legal right to self defence can only be supported by access to the the best tools for the job in a timely manner.
Training, practice and respect are all required in equal measure.
Gerry Kirkham. says
We’re all missing the point here. If true control of criminals with firearms were desired, the gazillion bucks that was spent on the original Firearms registry, and the new May 1 proposed multi billion dollar gun buy back funds would have easily been directed at those miscreants then, and these new miscreants now.
They don’t track pedophiles, sex offenders, or criminals with firearm prohibition orders. They are not really attempting to control the firearms smuggled over the borders, nor the current OK corral mess going on in big cities. Yet they spend big bucks, on banning legally purchased firearms, and don’t you dare buy the house across the street and move there without permission from the chief provincial firearms office.
Blair lies to our faces, and the ignorant, narcissistic sock monkey who has Gerry Butts do his actual thinking, says we want to hunt dear, and probably dangerous game too, with a scary AR 15. They tell the gullible public that we want to own and use these guns to kill the maximum number of people, in the minimum amount of time, and these Assault Style murder guns are only useful for that purpose, while at the same time they outfit RCMP cruisers with suspiciously similar “Patrol Style Carbines”.
The bigger question is why?
My own theories are, the more crime, the more the citizens clamor for more government, to do something more! Thus it further cements their reason for being. Plus, from their perspective, to them, we the deplorable legal firearms owners are the true threat, because, just as we are perhaps seeing the US devolve into civil war, it is us, the armed Joe Citizen who might push back against an oppressive dictatorial government, if things fall apart here.
They really don’t care about anyone outside of their base, I’m not even sure if they actually care for anyone at all, except themselves, and they wish to continue with their accustomed elegant lifestyles, and we may be a threat to their great joy of spending other peoples money.
There are darker issues gathering on the horizon as well. Watch for a giant push to ban “Assault Style rifles” in the US, now that lying and corrupt Joe Biden will be sworn in as President.
Covid has become the great fear motivator to control the minions, yet the reality is that while perhaps virulent, you are less likely to die from it than the regular flu, and as a virus, it will now be with us always, what a great tool for their box of tricks to control the fearful citizens for the foreseeable future. Anything is permissible to keep the gravy train on track.
peter bolten says
some other thoughts here while I’m sipping my evening tea and avoiding the zoo of post-capitol hill commentators on t.v….
1/ just finished my first round of handwritten letters to go postal to various MPs of various parties. i know we had a discussion about writing letters a little while ago, good time to get started, sometimes I actually receive a response from some one within a given department.
2/ post capital hill and Hon J. Trudeau’s public statement about ” attacking democracy”.. well i couldn’t let that one get by me without a letter surge to him and cc to others. we can all jump on this and word it our ways about how he and his ministers have enabled the OIC that attacks democracy and steals and potentially criminalizes many of us , with potential violent results, and how hypocritically Trudeau’s ministers continue to sell arms to human rights abusing countries IE Saudi Arabia and Egypt ,one of which just jailed a group of female activists [one a former Cdn student] wrongly and weirdly for wanting the right to drive an automobile, 6 years incarceration and god forbid other atrocities behind those dark bars ..hey Mr. Trudeau’s spies, are you listening and reporting?
Oh yeah, how about our two ‘Michaels’ in Chinese dank damp cells?
Any voter in the next election that has a conscience needs to be very concerned about these things .
HAPPY NEW YEAR. The roller coaster ride 2021 is entering another loop of stomach dumping fun.
Clive Edwards says
Can the West handle a two front war? The Middle East Muslims on the one hand and the Chinese commies on the other?
Israel is a Western country and needs to be supported while doing right by the Palestinian Arabs if possible. Suicide bombers need to be shot before they can harm anyone.
Ming Ding should never have been arrested – she broke no Canadian law. The two Michaels were both illegally arrested and in their case the Chinese courts should have no legal standing. Canadian Forces should be used if hard diplomacy fails.