November 18, 1994 For Immediate Release


Ottawa - Garry Breitkreuz, MP for Yorkton-Melville today released details of a failed firearms registration system in Australia. In February 1984, the State of Victoria required all firearms owners to register all firearms held in their possession. Just a short three years later, A. Newgreen, Chief Inspector and Registrar of Firearms for the State of Victoria recommended "that firearms registration be abolished."

Breitkreuz quoted from the 1987 Newgreen Report, "[Firearms registration] seems just to be an elaborate system of arithmetic with no tangible aim. Probably, and with the best of intentions, it may have been thought, that if it were known what firearms each individual in Victoria owned, some form of control may be exercised, and those who were guilty of criminal misuse could be readily identified. This is a fallacy, and has been proven not to be the case."

Newgreen reached the following conclusions in his report: "Previous experience in New Zealand and South Australia, an now indeed in the State of Victoria, indicates that firearms registration in the way in which it is implemented is costly, ineffective and achieves little. In my view, it does not repress or control the criminal misuse of, or irresponsible use of firearms. I do not believe that registration is the answer to the problem."

Breitkreuz predicted, "If the Liberal government proceeds with registration of rifles and shotguns in Canada it will meet with the same fate as the failed experiments in New Zealand and Australia. I suggest the government learn the lessons from these other countries before repeating the same costly mistakes. In my opinion, Canada would be much better off if they duplicated the very successful gun control policies of Switzerland and Singapore," concluded Breitkreuz.


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