August 27, 1996For Immediate Release


"Gun control and other government programs should be eliminated before cuts to public safety."

Yorkton - Today, Garry Breitkreuz, MP for Yorkton-Melville, slammed the Saskatchewan government, the federal Liberals and the RCMP for having their priorities all mixed up. "The RCMP brass blames the province for recent cuts to the number of highway patrol positions in the province. The same RCMP brass supports Allan Rock's flawed gun registration legislation which will force more Mounties behind desks rather than behind the wheels of their patrol cars where they should be," reported Breitkreuz.

According to news reports the RCMP is blaming provincial budget cuts for its decision to eliminate 22 provincial highway patrol positions as of September 1, 1996. This only leaves 59 RCMP officers patrolling Saskatchewan highways -- down from 101 officers in 1985. "There are not fewer cars on the roads and the roads sure aren't in better shape than they were ten years ago, so that leaves 'politics' as the main reason for the cut-backs," deduced Breitkreuz. "These cut-backs are supposed to save $600,000 a year but it is Saskatchewan taxpayers who should be making these important decisions about where they want their police officers working."

"For example, how much money is the RCMP spending to enforce the government's ineffective and unnecessary gun control laws?" asked Breitkreuz. How many officers are kept busy doing office work to keep track of guns and law-abiding gun owners in Saskatchewan? How many lives have been saved by enforcement of gun control laws compared to the lives that have been saved by highway patrol officers working to keep our highways safe? There are lots of unnecessary government programs that should be reduced and eliminated before the government cuts back on highway safety, such as: bilingualism, multiculturalism, handouts to large corporations, funding to special interest groups, etc, etc, etc."

Even Justice Minister Allan Rock is looking for more money. After a speech to the Canadian Bar Association this past weekend, Rock said he is considering "freeing up money for additional police officers for community crime prevention." Breitkreuz observed, "If the Liberals want to prevent crime, they should be putting more officers and patrol cars on our highways -- not taking them off. If the Liberals are looking for money for crime prevention they need not look any further than the $85 million they have already budgeted to register all the legally-owned shotguns and rifles in Canada. It's time the RCMP and the Liberal government start doing what the people want rather than what the Ottawa bureaucrats and political elite dictate," demanded Breitkreuz. "Public safety must come before political agendas."


For more information please call:

Yorkton: (306) 782-3309

Ottawa: (613) 992-4394

The RCMP have no right to make these cut-backs unilaterally -- the people of Saskatchewan should decide through some democratic, public process."