Combating hysteria by positively representing our sport

As the year continues to fly by with challenges and new developments occurring on an almost daily basis, it is important to remain positive about our sport. That’s why the resounding response to our ‘This is Shooting’ mini-documentary video launched last month has been outstanding and comes at a crucial time, both politically and for the future of our sport.

The video has already been seen by tens of thousands of people and shared far and wide, thanks to the power of social media. As we continue to investigate cost-effective ways to broadcast the video across other media platforms, I am personally calling on our 177,000-plus members to share this video with any non-shooting friends, local politicians and the general public who unfortunately don’t get to see the real side of sports shooting – the safe, fun and all-inclusive side that is constantly overlooked by the mainstream media, but that we all know to be true.

The video is a vital educational tool that comes at a time when the government is continuing its review into the National Firearms Agreement (NFA). As our story details, we cautiously welcomed Justice Minister Michael Keenan’s recent moves towards positive collaboration and increased consultation with sporting shooters and licensed firearm owners, along with his decision to hold more regular meetings of the Firearms Industry Reference Group (FIRG) of which I am part of and proudly represent the SSAA.

It was also pleasing to see the Minister remain level-headed amid emotional calls to tighten our gun laws whipped up by typical media hysteria, with his calm approach pointing to no major changes and better funding for border protection the most appropriate response. It is an encouraging approach and I will continue to represent our case to the Minister, both at our meetings and when required.

It appears that we are on the cusp of a Federal Election, with all the evidence pointing towards an early poll. With our new department SSAA Legislative Action (SSAA-LA) up and running, members can rest assured that we are on the front foot and have made contact with all the major political parties and relevant Senate candidates, calling for party statements on issues affecting the shooting sports, recreational hunting and firearms ownership. As we have in previous elections, we will endeavour to bring you these statements prior to the election. In the meantime, it is worth regularly checking our SSAA National website and Facebook page for timely updates as they happen, along with subscribing to our E-newsletter, which brings you the latest news as it comes to hand.

The SSAA National website will also link to the new SSAA Gun Sales website when it is launched in the coming weeks. At the time of writing, the website is in the final stages of testing and looks set to be another fantastic member benefit, with heavily discounted listing rates for SSAA members.

It is important to remember that the SSAA has protected firearm owners’ interests since 1948 and to this day we continue to strive to bring our members more benefits, such as our Gold Membership firearms insurance option. From our research, this insurance benefit far exceeds any home and contents insurance policy, with most policies unable to cover firearms when they are taken outside the home. I encourage members to take up this insurance option, as I myself have done, as your SSAA continues to protect your freedoms and deliver even more benefits.

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