Western Australia gun ban

New WA gun laws revealed and they’re not evidence based

The Western Australian Government has revealed its new gun laws and released a draft discussion paper on them, and if anything they’re worse than many shooters were expecting.

Chief among the attacks on law-abiding shooters is a hard limit of 10 firearms, even for people who both shoot competitions and hunt recreationally, an end to the practice of letting rural landowners sell access to their properties (“property letters”) for shooters, and factoring in a person’s “views, opinions and attitude” when deciding if they are a fit and proper person to hold a gun licence.

Under the planned new laws, physical and mental health checks will also be required upon licence application and renewal, and interstate licences will still not be recognised.

Shooting Industry Foundation of Australia CEO James Walsh said the proposed laws not only had a number of very concerning anti-shooter measures, they took WA further away from compliance with the National Firearms Agreement.

“This was the perfect opportunity to seek consistency — the Minister had an opportunity to bring WA in line with rest of the country and he’s chosen not to,” he said.

“Given the NFA is about a nationally consistent approach, you have to query why WA is doing something totally different to the rest of the country.”

Mr Walsh said to add insult to injury, it was clear the new laws were not evidence based, and were not actually going to have a positive impact on public safety.

“There’s no going after the criminals here — they’re going after the law-abiding people, they’re going after the easy targets,” he said.

While the WA Government has said the draft laws are open for community consultation until November 14, Shooters Union Australia president Graham Park said nobody really believed the government would listen to what shooters had to say about the proposed laws.

“This is the same state government that had identifiable maps showing where Perth gun owners lived published on the front page of the newspaper, and they just shrugged when people rightly complained about the very real threat to licensee safety they had created,” he said.

“We don’t believe for a moment that the WA Government will seriously take on feedback from us or other firearms users regarding their new laws, and any minor tweaks they do make will be on largely inconsequential stuff that will act as a fig leaf so they can pretend they did some consultation with people before they ram the laws home anyway.”




Like it? Share with your friends!

What's Your Reaction?

super super
fail fail
fun fun
bad bad
hate hate
lol lol
love love
omg omg
Royce Wilson

Royce is something rare in Australia: A journalist who really likes guns. He has been interested in firearms as long as he can remember, and is particularly interested in military and police firearms from the 19th Century to the present. In addition to historical and collectible firearms, he is also a keen video gamer and has written for several major newspapers and websites on that subject.