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Select Committee failed to identify the target

New Zealand Deerstalkers’ Association Inc

For immediate release


18 April 2017


Select Committee failed to identify the target

The Parliamentary Select Committee set up to address illegal possession of forearms has fired at the wrong target, says Bill O’Leary, President of the New Zealand Deerstalkers’ Association.

“The committee report has made recommendations that will impact on lawful firearm licence holders but is virtually silent on strategies to target criminals and punish firearm misuse,” he said.

“It is hard to understand how a committee of intelligent politicians have been so blinded by Police Association policy that it has shown practically no regard for the submissions presented by groups as diverse as rural women, target shooters, deerstalkers and retailers.”

He said that the minority report produced by New Zealand First, and the reaction of groups such as Rural Women, highlighted the failings of the select committee inquiry and noted very clearly that lawful firearm owners would be penalised financially. “Lawful firearm owners will suffer increased bureaucracy without having any faith in many of the strategies supposedly targeting criminals and gangs.”

The committee’s report would reinforce a commonly held belief that firearm ownership was under threat and create the potential for reduced confidence in our police among firearm users particularly in rural New Zealand, he concluded.

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