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7       Law and Justice— National firearms agreement

The Minister for Finance and the Public Service (Senator Cormann), also on behalf of the Leader of the Opposition in the Senate (Senator Wong), pursuant to notice, moved government business notice of motion no. 3—That the Senate—

               (a)       notes that:

                                     (i)       following the horrific 1996 Port Arthur mass shooting, the Howard Government, with bipartisan support and with the support of Australia’s state and territory Governments, implemented world-leading national gun law reform which has made Australia safer, including through:

                                                       (A)       a National Firearms Agreement that banned the sale, resale, transfer, ownership, possession, manufacture and use of those firearms, such as semi-automatic and fully automatic firearms, banned or proposed to be banned from import other than in exceptional circumstances,

                                                        (B)       establishment or enhancements to existing registration systems, effectively creating a national registration system between jurisdictions,

                                                        (C)       an amnesty and gun buyback period during which prohibited and unregistered weapons could be surrendered, and

                                                       (D)       basic licence requirements and licence categories, and

                                    (ii)       in 2017, the Coalition Government conducted a further national firearm amnesty, which resulted in 57,324 firearms being handed in - of those, 33,044 (57.6%) were subsequently registered, 4,106 (7.2%) were sold and 20,174 (35.2%) were destroyed;

               (b)       acknowledges the deep sense of shock, horror and sadness felt by all Australians following the Port Arthur mass shooting and empathises with the deep hurt and sense of loss which continues to be felt by the many survivors and the families and friends of the victims of the Port Arthur massacre back in 1996; and

                (c)       reaffirms its unequivocal commitment to the national gun law reforms implemented in 1996, which have stood the test of time and demonstrably made Australia a safer place for all Australians.

Debate ensued.

The question was divided at the request of Senator Spender—

Question—That paragraphs (a) and (c) of the motion be agreed to—put and passed.

Question—That paragraph (b) of the motion be agreed to—put and passed.