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100 days to go for Australian firearms buyback



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NEWS RELEASE

ATTORNEY- GENERAL AND MINISTER FOR JUSTICE

T h e H o n . D a r y l W i l l i a m s a m q c m p

22 June 1997 284

100 DAYS TO GO FOR AUSTRALIAN FIREARMS BUYBACK

The Australian Firearms Buyback Scheme has only 100 days left to run.

After September 30* people will no longer have the opportunity to be compensated for handing in prohibited firearms and the State and Territory enforcement schemes will replace the existing amnesty.

So far nearly 430,000 firearms have been handed to authorities and more than $214 million paid in compensation.**

The actions so far are a tribute to the commonsense and decency of law-abiding firearms owners and the hard work of each State and Territory, and it is a source of significant national pride.

The overwhelming result of the 1996 National Firearms Agreement and the amnesty and buyback is a positive one for our nation. Since 10 May 1996, each State and Territory in Australia has instituted the most comprehensive reform of firearms laws in Australia’s history.

Governments have banned self-loading rifles and shotguns and pump action shotguns and introduced comprehensive registration systems for all firearms, a universal requirement that people must establish a genuine reason to own or possess or use a firearm, a requirement including a 28 day waiting period that a permit be obtained to acquire a firearm, a requirement that all first-time applicants undertake training, agreed grounds for refusal and cancellation of firearms licences, regulation of mail order and transport of firearms and minimum standards for security and storage of firearms.

The removal of dangerous firearms from our communities and the establishment of uniform registration and licensing together with the introduction of comprehensive conditions for firearms ownership marks a significant turning point in our nation’s approach to firearms.

* Except in South Australia where the buyback ended on February 28 and the amnesty ends on June 30. ** At close of business on Friday June 20, 1997, 429,476 firearms had been handed in and $214.5 million had been paid in compensation.

Media contacts: Nicholas Harford (Attorney-General’s office) (06) 277 7300 Leonie Kennedy (Attorney-General’s Dept) 0419 610 656 Website www.gun.law.gov.au

COMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENTARY L I B w