Premier Doug Ford puts up $20M to fight guns and gangs

Ontario Premier Doug Ford addresses media outside of his office at Queen's Park on Jan. 16, 2020. (Ernest Doroszuk, Toronto Sun)

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The Ford government is investing more money in backing local police forces in their fight against guns and gangs while also calling on the federal government to deal with issues like weapons smuggling at the border.

Premier Doug Ford announced $20.5 million for Peel Regional Police so the force can beef up its efforts to combat gangs and guns.

“It will also allow our officers to target organized crime at its source and work with prosecutors to lock up the criminals,” Ford said.

The overwhelming majority of crime guns in the GTA are smuggled in from the United States.

Toronto Police say they are trace 82% of their crime guns to the U.S. while Peel reports 69% of illegal firearms encountered by officers are smuggled from America. Ford said it’s proof the feds need to do more to stop guns from coming into Canada.

“We need to invest in our border security. They are obviously champs down there. They’re the first line of defence,” Ford said.

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“Any assistance we can get to ensure that there’s connectivity in the flow of information, I think it would resonate with any chief in the GTA,” Peel Police Chief Nish Duraiappah said.

Ford said he disagrees with the Trudeau government’s plan to ban certain guns saying criminals don’t pay attention to bans.

“What the federal government should be doing to start focusing on bill reform,” Ford said.

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