The Sporting Shooters’ Association of Australia (SSAA National) Inc rejects the recent call by Australia Democrats Senator Natasha Stott-Despoja for a ban on semi-automatic handguns.
There is considerable evidence suggesting that a significant percentage of the semi-automatic handguns recently imported into Australia have, in fact, gone to various police departments around the country, as opposed to sporting shooters. Figures held by the SSAA indicate that as many as 19,000 semi-automatic handguns have been ordered by both the New South Wales and Queensland Police Services alone. A considerable portion of the orders have been already filled over the past 12 months.
Handgun ownership is already strictly controlled throughout Australia. Potential licencees are required to undergo comprehensive training and an extensive probationary period before they are eligible to apply for a licence. Anyone seeking to licence a handgun must prove a genuine need.
Creating hysteria about firearm import figures without first establishing the facts does not enhance the credibility of the Australian Democrats to have meaningful input to the firearm debate.