Further Assaults On The Firearms Community Today
Today, the first day that Parliament is sitting after almost 5 weeks of a nationwide lockdown, the Arms Legislation Bill (commonly known as the 2nd tranche) is on the Parliamentary Order Paper as a Bill for consideration. This Bill contains a number of items that are highly contentious.
New Conservative opposes this bill entirely.
Critically, 95% of the submissions on this Bill to the Select Committee were in opposition to it. This is unsurprising since the Bill proposes to further impose restrictions that would be complied with only by the law-abiding firearms community, including compliance requirements that would have the effect of making many existing firearms clubs unsustainable.
Among other items the Bill will also:
- widen the scope of definition of prohibited firearms to include certain pump-action rifles & shotguns (s2A);
- remove the right to silence in relation to firearms with a reversal of the onus of proof (s66B);
- create a universal registry (s92, 93, & 94);
- allow the infinite widening of the criteria under which a person may be refused a firearms licence, through regulations (s24A(1)(l), s24A(2)(ab), s24A(2)(b) & s74(1)(bb).
The clauses in section 24A mentioned in the last item above were inserted with unanimous approval by the members of the Select Committee, according to the online version of the Bill. Those members include representatives from all parties currently in Parliament.
“The issue with this Bill and with the Arms Amendment Act that was enacted last year, is simple", says Firearms Spokesperson Victoria O'Brien. "They just create more laws that criminals simply ignore, while imposing ever greater restrictions on firearms licence holders. This latest iteration contains the provision for an unlimited list of criteria under which a person may be refused a firearms licence, which is very concerning and objectionable.
"These criteria could very well include holding political views that are in opposition to the Government of the day, and do not have to be notified prior to application.
"The potential for abuse is astounding.”
New Conservative is committed to repealing all the amendments to the Arms Act that are enacted in 2019 and 2020.
Upholding the NZ way of life, personal freedoms and property rights are key tenets of New Conservative policy.
Victoria O'Brien, Firearms Spokesperson New Conservative