Langley Rod and Gun Club
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Canada's Public Safety Minister takes firearms course

24 Jan 2014 11:05 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
Public Safety Minister takes firearms course

On Wednesday, Minister of Public Safety Steven Blaney posted to Facebook a picture of himself attending a Canadian Firearms Safety Course.

Blaney can now apply for a Possession and Acquisition License (PAL), which will allow him to purchase firearms and ammunition - presuming the high-ranking Cabinet minister passes mandatory security checks. Blaney's office indicated that the Minister completed both the non-restricted and restricted course, meaning he can apply for a license allowing the purchase of both long-guns and handguns.

Blaney's director of communications, Jean-Christophe de Le Rue, said Blaney was "pleased" to take the course and "looks forward to many years of participating in this sport that is a part of our Canadian heritage."

De Le Rue would not say whether or not Blaney intends to purchase firearms once licensed.

Qualified instructors of the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (OFAH) administered the course to Blaney and a number of his staff.

Greg Farrant, Manager of Government Affairs and Policy at OFAH, said his organization was happy to provide the course: "Firearms owners in this country are safe and trained. It's good to have a firsthand experience. We're very pleased the minister did that."

"Given the fact that he's responsible for firearms safety, [Minister Blaney] felt it important that he experience the same course as everyone else," explained Farrant.

The Minister's portfolio includes both the Canadian Firearms Program and the RCMP.

According to the RCMP, there were 1.9 million individuals legally licensed to own firearms in Canada as of September 2013.

De La Rue touted the Conservatives elimination of the much-maligned long-gun registry, noting that they will "always stand up for law-abiding hunters from every region." He also indicated that further reforms might be on the way, saying they will "continue to take action to reduce needless red tape" for law-abiding firearms owners.

Blaney was first elected in January 2006 and is the MP for the Quebec riding of Lévis-Bellechasse, just south of Quebec City. He was named the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness in July 2013.

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