Proposal to water down gun laws should be ruled out

in Press Releases

Media Release - Thursday 20 October, 2016

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation is calling on all Australian governments to rule out softening gun ownership laws, which would remove the limit on the number of Category D firearms that can be owned by an individual.

The proposal being put forward would significantly water down the tight restrictions put in place on this category of high-powered weapons under the National Firearms Agreement 1996 (NFA) struck by former Prime Minister John Howard.

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation CEO Lesley Podesta has written to the Federal Attorney-General and each state and territory Police Minister ahead of a meeting in Melbourne on Friday, urging them to uphold the original intentions of the NFA.

“In Parliament just this week, the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull ruled out any watering down of the National Firearms Agreement. We welcome this commitment from our Prime Minister,” Ms Podesta said.

“Allowing any individual to own an unlimited number of Category D firearms, however, would be a significant softening of gun control in this country.

“We are calling on all governments to immediately rule out adopting any such proposal.”

Category D firearms currently include self-loading centre-rifles, self-loading rimfire rifles with a magazine capacity of more than 10 rounds, self-loading shotguns with a magazine capacity of more than 5 rounds, pump action shotguns with a magazine capacity of more than 5 rounds. (NSW Police Firearms Registry Fact Sheet)

“The majority of Australians want to keep our gun laws strong and this move would represent the complete opposite of that,” Ms Podesta said.

“This is serious matter of community safety that all Australians have an interest in, including the Alannah & Madeline Foundation.

“Therefore it should be the subject of an open, respectful discussion not political horse-trading. “

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation has consistently argued the Adler A110 – which has the capacity to fire up to eight shots in quick succession – should be banned permanently or be classified as a Category D firearm.

The petition launched by the Foundation in April calling for such a classification now has almost 30,000 signatures and is available at www.amf.org.au.

Media inquiries contact Adrian Bernecich: 0416 045 701 or adrian.bernecich@amf.org.au.

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