The Sporting Shooters Association of Australia Inc. said today that recent claims by the Queensland Minister for Police and Corrective Services that the Federal government’s buy-back scheme was responsible for a reduction in firearm-related crime in Queensland were far from proven.
SSAA Inc. researcher Paul Peake, challenged Minister Judy Spence to provide empirical proof of a relationship between the government’s confiscation program and a fall in gun-related offences.
Mr Peake went on to say there could be a number of reasons for a reduction in firearm-related crime, including better police resources - “The fact is a number of serious offences such as murder, attempted murder, sexual assaults and kidnappings involving guns center on numbers which are statistically very low and as such, it only takes a small fluctuation to seriously alter the figures year to year.”
Mr Peake said it was understandable that the government would try to cash in on any changes which at first glance appeared to vindicate its policies – “Given that $500,000,000 million dollars was poured into a program which still can’t be shown to have achieved anything definitive, it’s understandable the government would cleave to statistical straws. The challenge for the powers-that-be is to stop the spin doctoring and provide irrefutable evidence that its confiscation scheme has worked. It’s time for a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis.”