Have your say on potential changes to firearm laws in Aylesbury after Plymouth shootings

Should greater attention be paid to potential gun-holders social media posts, the survey asks?

Monday, 4th October 2021, 12:18 pm

Residents in Aylesbury's policing area are encouraged to have their say on potential UK-wide gun laws in the wake of the Plymouth shootings.

Jake Davison, shot and killed five people, injuring a further two, while in possession of a shotgun, leading to calls for greater scrutiny around gun licencing.

The killer had a firearms licence which was restored just one month before the mass shooting.

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The police commissioner wants your views on the licencing process for weapons like this

In response to the horrific mass murder, the Home Office announced it will be updating its licencing laws for gun applications.

Matthew Barber, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, wants people within his policing region to complete a survey discussing the potential changes.

The Association of Police and Crime Commissioner's (APCC) has opened a short survey, specifically wanting community views on the amount of scrutiny medical records and social media posts should get before guns are authorised.

Another query raised is whether an applicant after a firearm should have to pay the full amount of policing costs incurred, while their request is being investigated.

Matthew Barber said: “The APCC have today published an important survey, seeking views on potential changes to the licensing of firearms. We are keen to seek the thoughts of residents across the Thames Valley on any potential changes to the licensing of firearms.

“Results from this survey will feed into the Home Office review on the current arrangements for the licensing of guns.”

Chair of the APCC Marc Jones said: “There has been heightened public concern following the recent shooting of five people in Plymouth. I’d like to take this opportunity to extend my sympathies to all those affected by that tragic incident, and indeed to all victims of gun crime.

“The Home Office is currently reviewing arrangements for the licensing of guns and will shortly be introducing new statutory guidance to be followed by all police forces. Police and Crime Commissioners are elected to be the public’s voice in policing and so we want to hear what the public thinks about these issues, so we can feed those views to the Home Office.

“We want to hear all from sides including people who are, or have previously been, a registered firearms licence or shotgun certificate holder. The public may be surprised to hear that there are more than half a million licence holders in England and Wales, who legally own nearly two million firearms. We know the overwhelming majority do so safely and responsibly.

“So, while it is absolutely right that we have a discussion on licensing, we should be careful to ensure any changes to guidance or legislation are proportionate, reflect the public’s views, and above all are effective at keeping people safe.”

Aylesbury residents have until 5pm tomorrow (October 5), to have their say, the survey can be accessed online here.