Greater Auckland has the lowest rate of legal firearm ownership in the country with less than 3 % of the population being licensed, compared with 10.48 % of the population being licensed to own firearms in Southland. Yet South Auckland has a far higher crime rate of 5.8 robbery offences per 10,000 residents when compared with Southland with a rate of only 1.3 such offences.
As Neville Dodd, President of the Sporting Shooters Association explains “Numerous studies from around the world show that violent offending with guns has nothing to do with the number of lawfully owned firearms in a community.
What these studies also clearly show is that the common factor connected to firearm violence is poor socio-economic outcomes, such as poverty and poor housing. Both poverty and social housing are issues that our present government has so far failed to address.”
“The solution to the current crime wave and gang related shootings is not more restrictions on carefully vetted licensed gun owners, but to tackle the social issues that drive young people towards gangs and a life of crime.” Says Dodd.
“While we welcome measures proposed by opposition parties to get tough on gangs, we would caution against the further use of warrantless searches as this is likely to have unintended consequences for lawful firearm owners, as has already been demonstrated by a number of unjustified police raids on licensed owners.”