Greens NSW oppose increasing access to the most dangerous category of firearms
Today the NSW Legislative Council will be debating the Firearms Legislation Amendment Bill 2022 that intends to reclassify some of the most dangerous Category D guns in Australia and override the decision of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) that found KS-30, self-loading centre-fire rifles, are prohibited under the Firearms Act. The Bill also seeks to extend the maximum period of issue for Category D gun licences from 1 year up to 5 years.
The Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party have proposed amendments to this Bill that would significantly expand the class of persons that are eligible to receive a Category D firearms licence and would remove self-loading centre-fire rifles and self-loading shotguns from the prohibited firearms schedule.
Greens MP Sue Higginson has criticised this regressive move by the NSW Government, “It is disingenuous to suggest that the bill will clarify which firearms can be authorised for use under restricted Category D licences - this Bill, like the previous regulation made twice now, seeks to legalise a previously prohibited weapon, these are very dangerous weapons.”
“The simple fact is that we are talking about a military-designed and adapted kind of a semiautomatic gun. If we are prioritising the safety of the people of NSW we do not want a particular cohort of people being able to continue arming themselves with these otherwise prohibited military style weapons.
“If registered pest controllers are using these guns to manage the real and serious threat posed by feral animals on their properties then that is the case that the Government should be making instead of the regulatory convenience argument that they have presented us with.
“The Government should invest properly in what is actually required for effective invertebrate pest control and eradication.
“Extending the licence period from 1 to 5 years for the most dangerous firearms in NSW is a recipe for disaster. These Category D licences were very deliberately set for renewal every year because of the serious risk they pose to the community.