Prime Minister Stephen Harper met with Toronto Mayor Rob Ford on Tuesday to discuss the recent shooting violence in the city. (Jack Boland/QMI Agency)
TORONTO - Mayor Rob Ford wouldn't reveal what happened at his meeting with Prime Minister Stephen Harper Tuesday.
Ford didn't speak with reporters following the one-on-one meeting at a police station in the city's east end, not far from the Danzig St. mass shooting that left two dead and 23 injured just over a week ago.
Later in the day, at an announcement at the GM plant just east of the city, Harper said the two talked about tackling gun crime.
"We obviously discussed the recent events and our continued and, I think, joint determination -- and one shared by the province -- to tackle gun crime directly," Harper said. "I certainly encouraged the city and the province to continue to work together. We have been working together on enforcement measures. We've also been working together at trying to make sure we can make some of these gun penalties stick before the courts."
Tuesday's meeting comes a day after Ford met with Premier Dalton McGuinty and Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair to discuss gun violence.
Despite vowing to go into the meeting with a "money talks and BS walks" approach and a request for $5 million to $10 million to hire more Toronto Anti-violence Intervention Strategy (TAVIS) officers, Ford emerged with a commitment from McGuinty to make the TAVIS funding permanent.
At Queen's Park Monday, Ford called that commitment a "huge victory for the taxpayers of Toronto" and said he would be asking Harper for more funding to help make the city safe.
"We can't have any of this gunplay continue, and I'm going to do everything in my power to eliminate it. A lot of this comes down to stable funding, and that's what I am going to be asking the prime minister for," Ford said.
"I made some specific suggestions to the mayor, as he did to me, and we're both going to look into some additional measures we can also take," the prime minister said.
Harper touted the federal Conservatives' push for tougher penalties for gun offences.
"I think these events in Toronto underscore why...it is essential to have tough and certain penalties for gun crime," he said.
"I certainly call on the courts to take these penalties seriously - this is not a theoretical problem."
Ford was asked about a ban on guns during a radio interview Monday.He doubted gangsters would abide by a ban.
"The thugs, the gang members aren't going to turn in their guns, they are not going to register their guns," Ford said on AM640.
Ford said a gun ban would only punish those who like to go "pheasant shooting or skeet shooting or duck hunting."
"You really think the gang members are going to line up and say, 'OK, this is my Glock I have here.' C'mon, it's a waste of taxpayers' money," he said.