My dad is in his 60’s and spent much of his younger life on a farm in Ontario, hunting, fishing, and generally being around fire arms. He was, and still is a competent gun owner who observes all the appropriate laws with regards to ownership, storage, and use. He is probably one of the most safety conscious gun owner I know. Period.
He previously held a FAC when they were still valid and was relegated to a POL during the change in the regulations. He maintained ownership of his guns and his ability to use them safely and respectfully has not changed. The only real change was on paper which suddenly stripped him of his right to purchase new firearms. He could buy ammunition, he could still hunt, but he could not purchase and new firearms. As if new firearms are somehow more sophisticated to the point an old experienced gun owner could not comprehend them. Although not explicit, I am sure this has discouraged him and many others like him from pursuing his love of hunting more often.
Thankfully a private members bill (C-42) was launched in October 2014 to amend the current regulations with respect to a number of fire arm related issues. Not the least of which is the amalgamation of the PAL and the POL. When the bill receives royal assent and becomes law (expected to occur in June, 2015) , those who own POLs, in theory, should receive a PAL next time they renew their license. This is good news.
Now my father, who is still using his older, somewhat antique shotguns and rifles may have the opportunity to purchase guns once again and in turn, continue to enjoy the sport of hunting. I’m not saying he will upgrade (because he really enjoys what he has), but at least now the option could be available.
Here is a link to some discussion on the bill:
Cheers from my desk,