As we move into a new year with spring on the way, as firearms instructors we are still in waiting mode on any proposed changes that the Federal Government may or may not implement to the Firearms Act and the Canadian Firearms Safety Program. That said, at the time of writing this article the status quo remains.
We are now out of our show season, and I did have the opportunity to meet a number of our instructors at the Calgary, Red Deer and Edmonton shows. It’s always a pleasure to speak with instructors and glean their insight into the program. Please remember, should you have any questions or concerns please contact me anytime at the Calgary office.
A number of instructors have noted that the number of students attending the Non-Restricted courses appears to be down from previous years. In reviewing the year end numbers this appears to be somewhat true. What the numbers indicated is more students are attending the Restricted course. This trend may be attributed to a new generation who is more interested in target shooting than hunting. Also, uncertainty on proposed Changes to the Firearms Act may have given students the impression that they should complete their restricted course now, as it may not be available if new legislation is passed.
As far as training of new CFSC / CRFSC instructors, 2019 saw 22 new instructors completing certification. This brings the number of instructors in the Province to 412. Given the number of instructors, however, I still receive phone calls from potential students stating they cannot find an active instructor in their area. As an instructor, be an active in your community, and a role model for positive firearms ownership.
Also of interest, the RCMP “Firearms Reference Table” is now available to the general public (http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/en/firearms/firearms-reference-table). The table contains 98,223 pages of firearms including Non-Restricted, Restricted and Prohibited firearms. Searching this may be a daunting task, as I could not locate a ‘Search’ feature on the site.