|NZ Guns and Hunting | 11 - July, 2012|
Dear Member of Parliament,
The focus of this bi-monthly column is to update you on the lobbying we have undertaken on behalf of firearm owners and to ask you to approach your local Member of Parliament to introduce yourself as a responsible voter in their community.
We became aware the Dunedin City Council was attempting to introduce restrictive limits on ammunition stored within the city boundaries. The original proposal had number of limits for hazardous goods, including a 15kg limit of safety ammunition on a property.
We notified the local groups and sent a representative down for the submission. We had also heard that a number of city councils were watching the outcome to consider following Dunedin’s lead.
We are pleased to report that as a result of the lobbying, the city council has changed the limit to 25kg net powder weight. This will allow most shooters to store enough ammunition at their home for their annual shooting needs.
We have proposed police formulate a guide document to assist Arms officers and firearm owners to be used when applying for permits to import. This will ensure policy is followed consistently both across the country and across classes of firearm. The document is currently before the Police for their consideration.
We see this as a guide for both arms officers and firearms importers to assist in making an application for importation, under a 'special reason', in a form that ensures the reason is properly presented to the Police National Manager (Vetting and Firearms Licensing) and have a greater chance of success.
We have sent an open letter to the United Nations (UN) in relation to the proposed Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The meeting runs for four weeks from the 2nd July 2012. A copy of this letter is available on our website –www.colfo.org.nz. The intent of the UN is to obtain an agreement between all countries to control the transfer of arms across borders. This is too impede the illicit transfer of arms and the use of arms in breaches of human rights.
We support an agreement based on the control of cross-border shipment of arms when combined with transfer of ownership or control. However we have lobbied the treaty should also allow legitimate users to move firearms between states for authorised activities without undue complication.
For some years COLFO has been involved in reviewing a series of international standards the UN is proposing for national arms controls. These include the rights and privileges of civilian firearms owners, the storage of firearms and ammunition as well as the transfer of firearms nationally and internationally.
This is the most comprehensive work undertaken to date by the UN on arms control. It could have a large impact on civilian firearms manufacture and ownership.
The next meeting to review and put the draft controls forward for consideration by the UN delegates is in late August 2012. The Council intends to send one person for one week as a cost effective use of member funds. We are supported in representing New Zealand by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The Council has been lobbying members of parliament with updated research in regard to firearms in New Zealand and similar societies. This has been in the form of one email per month for the last six months covering such topics as; Who COLFO is and why it exists, current updates on the international experiences on the subject of full firearms registration, recent research results in regard to accidental death, suicide and assault using firearms and research into the linkage between firearms ownership and robbery and firearms used in crimes.
If you are interested in the emails these are available in the news section of the COLFO website. www.colfo.org.nz.
We have also provided a guide for firearm owners to use in approaching their local member of parliament. We ask that you send them an email or arrange to meet them personally. The point of this meeting or email could be to introduce yourself as part of their community, to put a face to a responsible licensed firearms owners that just wants to enjoy their interest in a safe and considerate way.
While we have all MP’s email addresses, we have been asked by some members of parliament to stop lobbying them. They cannot request this of the community they have been elected to represent.
All the best
IN THE NEWS
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Posted on: 06-06-2013Michael Dowling - COLFO Column Article May 2013
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Posted on: 28-04-2013AGM nomination form and register of attendance
Posted on: 10-02-2013Letter to MP's: COLFO's observations on recent shootings in the United States of America
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