WA’s state law that requires background checks for all gun sales has sparked outrage among gun owners, including in the state’s hunting community.
The WA Parliament passed the legislation in late August, requiring a background check for all private and public gun sales.
But a recent survey of gun owners in the hunting community found that they have been mostly supportive of the law, which they say is needed to keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have them.
But one WA hunting club said the law was too restrictive and that it was time for the state to consider more stringent measures.
“We have a long history of hunting and shooting, and the gun industry has been very important to our community,” said Michael Kynaston.
“We do not have the capacity to keep the guns out to all the people that need them, but we do have the ability to enforce our laws.”
In the hunting world, hunters typically use hunting rifles, but they also use a number of shotguns.
“It’s just not realistic that you can keep 100 percent of the guns that you are able to legally get out of your house,” Kynastons dad said.
“You’ve got to make sure that you’re not putting them in people’s hands, that they’re safe and that they are in safe hands.”
While hunting groups have voiced their concerns about the new gun law, they are not worried about gun violence in the area.
“The most recent survey by the Crime Survey of WA found that just under half of the respondents said they would be willing to give up their guns if there were an assault on their property,” said Victoria Police spokesman Superintendent Tim Tippett.
“Our concern is that it’s going to have an impact on the safety of our community, our police officers, and it’s really not good for us to have people on the streets with guns.”