Government dragged kicking and screaming on gun control

Posted 12th December 2016 by Clare O'Neil in Articles, News, Policy | 0 Comment

State Premiers and Territory Leaders today agreed to classify the Adler A110 lever-action shotgun with a capacity of over five rounds as a Category D weapon.

Labor welcomes this classification. Labor has consistently supported protecting John Howard’s world-leading gun laws by tightening restrictions on the Adler.

While we welcome this decision by COAG, the manner of reaching this decision has been appalling.

Over the past two years, the Turnbull government has demonstrated a blithe disregard for community safety and the harm caused by gun violence.

Both Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull reportedly attempted to trade our gun laws for the vote of Senator Leyonhjelm in the Senate. Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull contradicted each other on the floor of the Parliament. The Liberals and the Nationals split on gun control in the Senate, with members of Mr Turnbull’s own Cabinet refusing to vote in support of a Cabinet decision to extend the import ban on the Adler A110. Mr Turnbull’s backbench called for John Howard’s gun laws to be watered down. And Mr Turnbull’s own Deputy, Barnaby Joyce, openly defied him on gun control on national television just this week.

Two years of shifting and splitting on gun control has had serious consequences. There is much more work to be done to ensure the continued safety of Australians against gun violence.

Adlers have flooded into Australia, with more than 7,000 reported to be on order. We do not know how many have already made it into Australia.

The 5-shot Adler, which can be converted into an 11-shot shotgun with a simple modification, remains readily available as a Category B weapon.

Guns are being stolen at record levels, with 3,542 firearms stolen from legal gun owners in 2014-15 alone. These guns are now in the illicit firearms market and are on our streets.

With such division and disarray, the COAG agreement on the Adler A110 has happened in spite of the Turnbull Government rather than because of it. With such division and disarray, the Turnbull Government cannot be trusted on gun safety.

 

FRIDAY, 9 DECEMBER 2016

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