All our objectives are predicated on the belief that the interests of public safety demand a reduction in the availability and attractiveness of guns of all kinds.
- The tightening of gun licensing into a single, more rigorous system that includes all firearms, shotguns and airguns with power in excess of one joule. The onus should be on the applicant to demonstrate their suitability to own a gun and a specific need for doing so. Any opportunities for the spontaneous purchase of any gun, including air weapons, should be eliminated.
- A licence for every gun, renewed annually (as opposed to the current five-year renewal) and requiring two referees for each application and its renewal.
- An increase in the licence fee to cover the real cost of policing a more rigorous system so there is no subsidy from the taxpayer.
- Lifting the secrecy about gun ownership, making it possible for certain professionals and members of the public to find out who has a licence and for what purpose.
- A National Gun Hotline for those wishing to record their concerns about a gun owner. This should be a well-advertised free phone line for those concerned about their own or another’s safety or the behaviour or well-being of a gun owner.
- Refusal or revocation of a gun licence where there is evidence of domestic violence, drug or alcohol abuse, or misuse of a gun; when a relevant misdemeanour has been committed (e.g. shooting of wildlife, threatening behaviour, or negligent storage of the weapon); or when an applicant has a significant criminal conviction.
- Mandatory request for information from GPs when a patient applies for a gun licence. Permanent flagging of GP records of Firearms Certificate Holders.
- Mandatory private and discrete notification to former and present partners of new and repeat applicants. (Evidence from Canada and Australia shows that gun-related domestic violence has decreased as the legal frameworks on gun licensing and domestic violence have become harmonised.)
- Declaration of interest whenever a magistrate or judge dealing with a firearm-related crime or an appeal against revocation is himself/herself a firearms certificate holder.
- Independent oversight of the licensing process to ensure a professional distance is maintained between applicants and licensing officers, and police are held accountable.
- Removal of the exemption of airsoft weapons from the terms of the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006.