Last night’s drive-by shooting in the Federal Electorate of Higgins highlights critical gaps in Australia’s firearms management systems, according to the Shooting Industry Foundation of Australia.
The industry peak body has called – for years – for the introduction of an ongoing National Firearms Amnesty and a Digital Firearms Interface, but these calls have fallen on deaf ears from all sides of politics.
Executive Officer Rod Drew says politicians should commit to get illegal guns out of our communities.
“For more than two decades, politicians have found it too difficult to stand up for community safety and too expensive to deliver on their National Firearms Agreement promises,” Mr Drew says.
“The fact of the matter is that Australia does not have practical, integrated systems to track firearms, to stop illegal imports and to get illegal guns off the streets.”
“Australians deserve 21st century solutions to 21st century threats and it’s up to Australian voters to demand gun leadership from our elected representatives,” he says.
SIFA’s Laura Patterson adds that the Foundation’s campaigns at state and federal level over election cycles since 2016 have raised the profile of the peak body, which has never advocated for the watering down of Australian firearms laws.
“SIFA’s approach has always been to hold politicians to account for the decisions they make. SIFA believes that political inaction from all sides of politics has left law enforcement and border control without the resources required to manage Australian firearms effectively,” she says.
“The reality is that in 2019, Australia’s firearms management systems are literally piles of paper. It is quite unbelievable that we have no ongoing National Firearms Amnesty and no Digital Firearms Interface,” Ms Patterson says.
The Shooting Industry Foundation of Australia is running a campaign leading up to the federal election called “It’s In Your Hands!” and which calls for voters to demand a national firearms amnesty from every candidate in their electorate.
“The campaign is all about helping voters understand the important role they play in the safety of their communities. An ongoing National Amnesty would demonstrate political will to get illegal guns out of Australia,” Ms Patterson says.
“We are appalled that a young person has lost their life in Melbourne in such a cruel act of criminal violence. It is time that our community stands together to demand that our elected representatives give Victoria Police everything they need to fight illegal gun crime in Victoria and across the nation,” she says.
Video of the SIFA It’s In Your Hands! advertisement can be viewed here.
Further Information Laura Patterson Tel: 0408 296 521