McGuinty Government Leads Reforms To Fight Illegal Firearms And Make Communities Safer

Archived Release

McGuinty Government Leads Reforms To Fight Illegal Firearms And Make Communities Safer

Ministry of the Attorney General

Ontario's Proposals Result In Federal Commitment To Increased Public Safety TORONTO, Nov. 10 - The Ontario government's call for a crackdown on violent gun crime was met with a federal commitment of legislative and funding support and the endorsement of other provinces and territories, Attorney General Michael Bryant and Community Safety and Correctional Services Minister Monte Kwinter announced today. The announcement was made following a federal- provincial-territorial justice ministers' meeting in Whitehorse, Yukon. "Our call for zero tolerance on gun crimes has been heard, loud and clear," said Bryant. "I am pleased that our efforts are proving fruitful. The federal government has committed to increasing mandatory minimum sentences for trafficking guns and to introduce two new offences, championed by Ontario, to target gun theft, which leads to gun crime." The two new offences would be "breaking and entering with intent to steal a firearm" and "robbery where a firearm was stolen." "This federal commitment echoes our determination to be tough on crime, and tough on the causes of crime," said Kwinter. "We are also very pleased with $50 million in new federal funding, announced by the Prime Minister, to support community-based prevention and intervention projects that prevent youth from becoming involved in guns and gangs." As well, Ontario and the federal government have agreed to move forward on teams of dedicated prosecutors in the Toronto area to take action on gun and related drug crimes. Ontario and federal prosecutors could be cross- designated to represent both the Attorneys General of Canada and Ontario. "We have achieved a remarkable national consensus in our effort to ensure that sentences for gun-related offences actually match the crimes and act as a deterrent to further gun violence," Bryant said. Disponible en fran├žais www.attorneygeneral.jus.gov.on.ca www.mpss.jus.gov.on.caFor further information: Greg Crone, Ministry of the Attorney General, Minister's Office, (416) 326-1785; Brendan Crawley, Ministry of the Attorney General, Communications Branch, (416) 326-2210; Andrew Hilton, Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, Minister's Office, (416) 325-4973, (416) 559-0259 (cell); Anthony Brown, Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, Communications Branch, (416) 314-7772