Our take on the CBSA folding knife ban

posted in: News | 7

As many of you probably know, there was a recent ruling by the CITT and CBSA that changes the way the CBSA will be interpreting the definition of “centrifugal knife.” As you can see here this new interpretation means that the CBSA is considering any knife that can be opened with one hand via a flipper tab or thumb stud etc. as a prohibited weapon.

The odd thing about the situation is that knife law as stated in the Canadian Criminal Code has not changed. So unless the police across the country (many of whom own such knives) decide that the border agency’s decision should also affect how they enforce the criminal code, nothing should change within the country. Our current knife laws mostly treat knives as tools and intent of the user is key: if you are using a knife or threatening to use a knife as a weapon, you will get into trouble; otherwise no-one bothers you.

So at the moment, we have no plans to change anything. Our Skaha production will carry on unless and until something makes it impossible (we are counting on this never happening). We do feel bad for all the knife retailers across Canada who will be most impacted.

There is a movement shaping up within the Canadian knife community to challenge the CBSA / CITT ruling. Anyone who cares about this issue should read this short document from House of Knives. They are one of the major forces behind the movement.  Included in the document are links to a federal petition (sponsored by a MP) and other ways to support the cause. Whether you are a business or an individual, your input matters. Please take a minute to add your voice!

There is also a gofundme campaign by a respected Ontario based criminal defence lawyer (with experience in pocket knife cases), the funds from which will eventually be used for a constitutional challenge. In other words, an attempt to change the criminal code definitions around knives. They are currently too vague and cause a lot of confusion for knife users, businesses and law enforcement alike. We have donated and encourage you to as well, even if it’s just a little bit!

7 Responses

    • John Gudmundson

      Thanks Rob! I added an update to the post based on your comment.

  1. Trevor Williston

    Well put John. I wish your common sense was a little more common. Especially amongst the bone heads at The CBSA.

  2. Gary

    As a long time knife collector I feel that CBSA has greatly overstepped their function and is basing their actions on A single Supreme Court ruling (who know nothing about knives )

    • John Gudmundson

      We agree. Fundamentally, it comes back to the argument “is it a tool or a weapon?” Knives are for cutting things, baseball bats for hitting balls, hammers for nails, hydrochloric acid for dissolving rust. All can be used as weapons. The most universal and simplest and least discriminatory policing of them is to assume they are tools and to come down hard only on those who treat them as weapons.

  3. Fred Donaldson

    I’ve contacted my local MP and the CBSA regarding the issue. CBSA did respond to say that they had received my feedback, so at least it appears they’re listening.

  4. Trevor Williston

    Yeah this is a bunch of B.S. I’m glad to hear someone is doing something to stand up to these ridiculous bans. I like to know how I can help to support this cause in any way? Thank you. Trevor (T.willy on BladeForums )

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