Well done Wairarapa!
Our favorite pistol club is now earmarking the income generated from Police using their range to help fund the Trust that is challenging Police abuses of gun law.
Every club needs to do this.
It is the perfect compromise for those clubs not yet ready to join the bans of Police using our facilities.
Please table this at your next committee meetings.
Wairarapa Pistol and Shooting Sports Club press release:
The dispute between the Wairarapa Pistol and Shooting Sports Club and the Police, over their malicious and manipulative Firearms policies and incompetent administration of the Arms Acts, is far from over. In March, out of sheer frustration, the club announced that it would stop Police use of its ranges in protest.
As an act of good faith, the club allowed the Police to train in March as a response to an undertaking from local Police representatives that they would facilitate a meeting, between a number of shooting community groups and the Police Commissioner and Minister.
A meeting has now been arranged between the club and the firearms team at Police National Headquarters, and other representatives have had meetings with Police hierarchy.
While the meetings are not quite what we demanded, we are aware that through the good efforts of our MP Alistair Scott, the Police Minister is well aware of the situation, and so we have agreed to allow the Police to use our ranges for three days in April.
This decision was taken despite being aware of the (secret?) Police submissions to the Law and Order Select Committee (review of how firearms get into criminal hands), after it took an official information act request to finally reveal that information. This kind of exclusive policing does not bode well and is frankly, very “Un-Kiwi”!
What convinced the club to accept Police range bookings (for now) was the announcement that Auckland Barrister Nick Taylor has initiated a judicial review of a number of Police firearms policies questioned by the club, and this review needs funding. The Wairarapa Pistol and Shooting sports club has made a significant donation to that fighting fund and will forward all range fees from the Police to that fund, while we continue to accommodate them at Gladstone.
Furthermore, we suggest that other clubs that are considering a Police ban, and individuals concerned with preserving our sport and freedoms, do the same thing.