Action demanded over “totally unacceptable treatment” by police

Queensland Police has been slammed for causing substantial economic loss to the state’s shooting industry because of failures by the Weapons Licensing Branch that include extensive delays, poor performance and lack of customer service. 

The force has also been accused of not engaging with the firearms industry and of refusing to correct problems that were pointed out to them.

“Our industry has had enough of poor regulator performance, and it is about time they are held to account for their policy and service delivery failings,” James Walsh, operating officer of the Shooting Industry Foundation Australia (SIFA), said.

He cited one example of a Queensland firearms dealer being forced to warehouse almost $1 million worth of stock because Queensland Police was failing to process permits to acquire within an acceptable timeframe. 

“Many had been outstanding for over six months,” Mr Walsh said. 

“This is totally unacceptable treatment of a highly compliant industry by its regulator.”

He compared the treatment of the firearms industry by its regulator with the situation in other industries, where proactive engagement was aiding with recovery from the economic costs of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s time that Queensland Police are reminded they have a job to do, and it is imperative that they do it fairly and efficiently.”

Mr Walsh followed SIFA’s blunt assessment of the situation with a demand that the Queensland Police Minister “rectify the damage he is doing [to] a legitimate Queensland industry”.  

He added that SIFA was putting on notice other regulators around the country and that the ongoing poor treatment of the firearms industry would “no longer be tolerated”.  




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Mick Matheson

Mick grew up with guns and journalism, and has included both in his career. A life-long hunter, he has long-distant military experience and holds licence categories A, B and H. In the glory days of print media, he edited six national magazines in total, and has written about, photographed and filmed firearms and hunting for more than 15 years.