According to our honorary Sucka lawyer Erik Magraken of Canadian MMA Law Blog, amateur MMA might eventually fall under the jurisdiction of the British Columbia Government and the new Athletic Commissioner.
Amateur MMA in British Columbia could fall under provincial jurisdiction
A further legal change in BC Combat Sports law is expected shortly as a result of Bill S-209 making amateur combat sports illegal in BC. The BC Government confirms, through the BC Athletic Commissioner, that they are “actively working” on a legislative response. If you are a stakeholder in the Combat Sports/MMA community now is the time to give your feedback to the Government to ensure they choose the most sensible path in addressing this issue.
Here is the latest information released through BC’s Athletic Commissioner:
Changes to the Criminal Code of Canada affecting Combat Sports in BC
The Federal Government has approved Bill (S-209) to amend the Criminal Code of
Canada and this Bill has now received Royal Assent and is in effect as of June 19, 2013. This amendment makes professional boxing and mixed martial arts contests legal in Canada when they have the permission of an athletic board or commission. This change has cleared the way for professional boxing and mixed martial arts contests to commence in this province. In addition, this Bill amends Section 83 of the Criminal Code to permit a “contest between amateur athletes in a combative sport with fists, hands or feet held in a province with the permission of the province’s lieutenant governor in council or any other person or body specified by him or her”. This means that amateur combat sport events in B.C. will only be permitted if approved by the Province through one of two possible means: The Province can designate, with Cabinet approval, amateur combat sports where events can take place without regulation and supervision from a sanctioning body. No license will be required; or, The Province can designate, with Cabinet approval, amateur combat sports where events can take place but only with regulation and supervision from a sanctioning body designated by the Province. Licenses will be required. In such cases Cabinet will also need to approve the unique sanctioning body for each sport. Until such designation is made, the changes in the Criminal Code of Canada make any amateur combat sport contest outside of the law. While decisions about which amateur sports will be designated in which category have not been made, the Province is actively working on a response to this change in Federal legislation and will make the results known as soon as possible.
Follow Erik @erikmagraken and check out his Canadian MMA Law Blog