Independent firearms licensing authority needed – Deering

17th June, 2014

Fine Gael Carlow TD, Pat Deering, has called for the establishment of an independent firearms licensing authority to ensure greater safety in the purchase of guns. He recently submitted a Parliamentary Question on the matter to Minister for Justice, Frances Fitzgerald TD.

“I recently submitted a Parliamentary Question to Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald, on the need for an independent firearms licensing authority in Ireland.

“I feel strongly that there is a need for an independent body to monitor all those applying for firearms licenses. It is important we know that people receiving gun licenses are of good character, trustworthy and will be conscious of the health and safety responsibilities of a gun owner.

“The Gardaí have recently highlighted a number of public safety concerns in relation to gun ownership. Furthermore, members of the judiciary have expressed difficulties in the interpretation of the legislation where public safety incidents occur.

“In response to my parliamentary question, the Minister confirmed that the Department of Justice is currently examining the licensing of firearms in conjunction with An Garda Síochána and she expects to receive a report on the matter in the near future. Furthermore the Minister has been hearing from interest groups on the matter of firearms licensing and taking their concerns on board.

“I look forward to following up with the Minister in relation to this report and will continue to push for the establishment on an independent firearms licensing authority.”