TORONTO – Steven Del Duca stood at the scene of a recent high-profile carjacking to call out the Ford Conservatives’ callous indifference to a spike in handgun crime.
Del Duca announced that an Ontario Liberal government will ban handguns across the province and hire more police officers to curb a spike in handgun violence and make communities safer.
“Every day, we’re seeing more and more brazen carjackings at gunpoint. It’s a frightening reminder that we need urgent action to get handguns off our streets,” said Del Duca. “What’s worse, Doug Ford doesn’t seem to care and is fighting to keep handguns legal. He has stated multiple times that he opposes a handgun ban, even as handgun-related crimes spike in his own backyard. These brazen attacks are escalating and endangering the lives of families across Ontario – and the fear needs to end.”
According to the Toronto Police Service, auto theft has increased by 81% since 2017 while carjackings were up 39% between 2019 and 2020. Reported instances of carjackings so far this year (93) are on track to far surpass last year (103). Toronto City Council called on the provincial government to work with the TPS and other police services to create an Auto Theft Task Force to combat the sudden increase in carjackings – but the Ford Conservatives have dragged their feet.
An Ontario Liberal Government will:
- Ban the sale, possession, transport and storage of handguns in Ontario;
- Strike a provincial Auto Theft Task Force that brings various law enforcement agencies and Crown prosecutors together to tackle carjackings driven by organized crime;
- Accept the federal government’s offer to fund a buy-back program;
- Crack down on gun smuggling at the Ontario–U.S. borders;
- Lead the charge for a national ban on handguns to stop trafficking through inter-provincial borders.
“Doug Ford would rather cozy-up to the gun lobby than crack down on crime,” continued Del Duca. “If you want safer streets, the choice is clear: an Ontario Liberal government that will ban handguns once and for all, or Ford Conservatives who put the gun lobby before families. The choice is yours.”