Firearms law reform on West Australian Government agenda.

Firearms law reform on West Australian Government agenda.

Following the McGowan Government’s unprecedented landslide victory in the recent Western Australia State election, it appears that gun law reform is high on the new Government’s agenda.

In opening the new WA Parliament, his Excellency the Governor Kim Beasley AM, stated:

“The Government will also reform our firearms laws, to ensure that guns are not only kept safely when they are in the community, but out of the hands of criminals.

Yesterday marked twenty-five years since the Port Arthur Tragedy. Australia has benefited greatly from strict gun control laws passed in its wake. It is essential that Governments continue to ensure that we do not lose the ground we have gained”

Based on Western Australia’s past treatment of the Australian firearms industry, SIFA holds serious concerns that ‘reform’ in the sense of what the WA Government is referring to, will only mean more onerous and tighter regulations on law abiding businesses and shooters.

Western Australia remains the most difficult jurisdiction in Australia for licensed and law abiding firearms businesses to operate. It also maintains one of the most onerous and restrictive firearms licensing regimes in the country.

Firearms businesses and shooters in WA have been waiting to see some sensible firearms law reform as detailed in the recent 2016 Law Reform Commission of Western Australia, Project 105 – Review of the WA Firearms Act 1973. The final report made several common sense recommendations including the removal of appearance provisions in the notorious ‘Section 26B’ of the WA Firearms Regulations, yet unfortunately to date, the report appears to have been ignored.

SIFA wrote to the newly appointed WA Police Minister the Hon. Paul Papalia on the 10th of May, requesting a forum to ascertain the agenda of “reform” the Government is seeking. To date we have not received a response.