The Sporting Shooters Association of Australia Inc. has denounced a recent move by the Minister for Justice and Customs, Amanda Vanstone, aimed at overhauling import regulations for handguns.
According to the SSAA’s Executive Director for Public Relations & International Affairs, Mr Keith Tidswell, the move has been undertaken without any input from firearm importers, dealers or end-users. Mr Tidswell said “It’s just another example of Senator Vanstone making policy on the run without any regard for the people likely to be most effected.”
SSAA National Secretary, Roy Smith, described the new regulations requiring the Australian Customs Service to hold on to all handguns imported into the country as “simply preposterous”. Mr Smith said “The logical extension to this approach is to ban pharmacies from holding stocks of drugs in order to reduce abuse.” Mr Smith went on to claim that while legitimate shooters and dealers had tried their best since 1996 to adapt to new licensing requirements, “the Federal government had tightened the thumb screws at every opportunity”. Mr Smith said it was time shooters thought seriously about a change of government at the next election.
The Sporting Shooters Association and firearm dealers have vowed to challenge the new regulations in the courts.