Sunday, December 14, 2008

Gun Legislation News

Just seen this article reporting how gun ownership has increased in NSW (New South Wales) and how some of the laws introduced after the Port Arthur massacre are being relaxed.

GUN ownership is booming again in NSW, with 40,000 new firearms registered in the past four years.

The rise coincides with a deal cut by the State Government and the Shooters Party to water down tough gun laws introduced in the wake of the Port Arthur massacre.

Figures from the NSW Firearm Registry obtained by the National Coalition of Gun Control show gun ownership has risen at the rate of 10,000 a year since 2004 to 687,138 in October this year.

Multiple gun ownership has also soared. The number of people receiving permits to obtain a second or subsequent firearm in 2006 was 32,616.

In the first 10 months of this year, 43,095 such permits were issued.

The NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics has also revealed that guns are being stolen at a rate of more than two a day. The majority are taken from homes.

Despite the worrying figures, the Government and the Shooters Party have quietly agreed to a number of changes to gun laws introduced by former premier Bob Carr after the Port Arthur killings.

Shooting clubs will no longer have their licences automatically revoked for not disqualifying members who have been convicted of firearms offences.

Previously, the police commissioner could immediately revoke a club's licence for not taking action against a convicted member.

In another change, the mandatory 28-day waiting period before a second or third gun can be acquired has also been scrapped.

The Government has also made it easier for men who have previously been the subject of apprehended violence orders to regain a gun licence.

Here is Western Australia, we have only ever had the 28-day waiting period for the first firearm, never on subsequent ones, so I see these changes as just coming into line with other states' legislation.

Interested to read about the ABS figures on the rate of stolen guns - would actually like newspaper articles to actually link to where they get these figures from and the full details rather than "the majority are taken from homes".

No comments: