The plan to scrap the long-gun registry is not the only policy of the federal Conservative government that is causing consternation at Canadian police agencies.
The Canadian Association of Police Boards (CAPB) approved eight resolutions when its members met in New Brunswick last week, including one that calls on the government to restore the mandatory long-form census.
The association recognizes "that police agencies throughout Canada depend on reliable, comprehensive demographic statistical information provided by Statistics Canada to establish policing priorities and to determine policing services for their communities," the CAPB said in a statement released Monday.
"The government of Canada is constitutionally responsible for the periodic collection and dissemination of such statistical information," said the statement. "The long form census used by Statistics Canada is the basic tool for gathering the necessary statistical information while protecting the confidentiality of such information."
The association added however that it does not believe failure to complete the mandatory sentence should result in criminal charges that could lead to a jail term.
The statement from the police boards comes as CBC reports that Canada's police chiefs are planning a large public relations campaign in support of the federal long-gun registry.
The broadcaster says it has obtained a draft report on the registry to be unveiled later Monday at the annual meeting of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police in Edmonton. The report says the chiefs want to set the record straight about the registry, which they say is effective and efficient.
The report was originally to have been presented by RCMP Chief Supt. Marty Cheliak before was transferred from his post as the head of the Canadian Firearms Program last week and ordered to take French-language lessons.