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Canada's Liberal Party Withdraws Resolution to Ban Semi-Automatic Firearms

WINNIPEG, Manitoba - Delta Waterfowl has learned that a resolution to ban the personal use of semi-automatic firearms has been withdrawn by Canada's Liberal Party.

Resolution No. 42, which was endorsed at the Liberal Party's convention in Montreal recently, was removed after sporting and industry groups from across Canada objected to language contained in the resolution.

"This is great news for Canadians as well as sportsmen from the United States who hunt in this country," said Delta's Vice President of Policy for Canada Dr. Robert Bailey, who played a key role in organizing opposition to the resolution.

Sportsmen objected to the resolution's inaccurate claim that, "because automatic and semi-automatic weapons are illegal for hunting" and "do not support the hunting culture...of Canada," the party would "support legislation to eliminate their use."

Delta President Rob Olson sent a letter to Member of Parliament Stephane Dion, leader of the Official Opposition Liberal Party, pointing out that semi-automatic firearms are legal for duck, goose, upland game and big game in Canada.

"Placing a legal, semi-automatic shotgun used to hunt ducks in the same category as an automatic weapon intended for military purposes is not appropriate," Olson wrote. "The real issues of firearms abuse have nothing to do with law-abiding hunters...and there is no need to ban such guns."

Says Olson, "Delta Waterfowl commends the Liberal Party for its willingness to listen to sportsmen and change its resolution." He also praised Dr. Bailey's efforts in opposition of the resolution.

Bailey organized and hosted a teleconference call that included a diverse group of outdoor organizations who opposed the resolution. "I was gratified by the response from these grass-roots organizations," Bailey says. "The outcome demonstrates what can happen when sportsmen pool their resources and passion to address an issue of concern."

Joining forces to oppose the resolution were the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters, the Nova Scotia Federation of Anglers and Hunters, the British Columbia Wildlife Federation, the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation, the Canadian Sportfishing Industry Association, the Yukon Fish and Game Association, Canadian Shooting Sports Association, the Quebec Wildlife Federation and the Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association.

Editors: For more information, contact Dr. Robert Bailey at 613-283-6866.