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National Changes To The Firearms Safety Training System

There has been an important and significant change to the delivery of firearms safety training in New Zealand. As was mentioned in a recent press release from NZ Police, MSC has signed a two-year agreement to deliver the practical component of the new firearms licence process for new applicants, managed by NZ Police.

This new practical element (complemented by an initial theory test) will be delivered by a small team of regionally based paid instructors, which is in contrast to the current training system delivered by a large volume of volunteers. MSC would like to make it clear that the dedication and service of volunteer instructors to local communities, and to the nation as a whole, is greatly appreciated and that this change was not a reflection on past or current volunteer commitment. MSC CEO Mike Daisley recognised the dedication to firearms safety from the instructors.

“We’d like to publicly thank our volunteers for decades of service to their communities. New Zealand is indebted to their tireless work to improve firearms safety.”

The new practical model proposed by the MSC, and refined to meet NZ Police requirements was arrived at after a national face to face roadshow and consultation period involving each region of New Zealand and first-hand understanding of international models. To achieve NZ Police’s objectives the current model needed to be changed in a fundamental way. Daisley says the main focus was on improving consistency of the experience for the applicant and moderation of instructors.

“The new system which is based on a paid instructor model, will deliver higher levels of consistency across the country and bring new firearms users up to speed more effectively.”

“It’s critical to the safety of all New Zealander’s that the practical safety training component of the wider firearms licensing process for first time applicants is managed to the highest standards.”

Transitioning to the new system has already begun and is intended to be completed within a few months, with the first practical sessions beginning in July 2018.


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