Australia’s gun club may be closed but there’s still a gun-free zone
Posted November 20, 2018 07:01:52 Gun club owner David Killebrew says he’s open to a “sustainable” option if he can find a buyer for the club.
Gun-free zones are increasingly common in the US, but it’s been difficult to convince the owners of gun-related businesses in Australia to allow customers to bring guns.
“There is no question that there are lots of gun clubs that have gone out of business in Australia, but the ones that haven’t are those that are open to the public and allow the public to come in and have a look,” Mr Killeburn said.
“So there’s an option.
There’s no question about it, if you could get an Australian-owned gun club to go out of the business that’s a pretty good solution.”
He said he’d like to see the owners consider the issue again and come up with a solution.
“You never know what the next generation is going to want to do, so it could be a good thing to look at,” he said.
Gun clubs can be legally open if they are “open to the general public”, but if you want to carry a firearm, you must be at least 18 years old.
In Victoria, the state’s laws only allow a gun club with more than two members to open if it is a “public shooting” venue.
There is no gun-restriction policy for the Gun Club of Western Australia.
It has an open-carry policy, which means members can carry concealed handguns on premises, but no rifles or shotguns.
In Queensland, only the owner of a private club can openly carry a gun, but that doesn’t mean it is illegal to openly carry.
The Gun Club Association of Queensland says gun clubs can apply to open-licence a firearms licence if they meet certain criteria.
“All members of a gun group are required to abide by the Gun Clubs of Queensland Act 2001,” the group said in a statement.
“Membership in the Gun club is not open to all members, but those who have obtained a licence can openly hold firearms.”
If a gun is used in a crime, the club must notify police, which may result in an investigation.
“If there is an open violation, we will investigate and report that violation to the police, as required by law,” the statement said.
Mr Kilebrew said the Gunclub Association of Western Victoria’s policy was based on the laws of the state and not his.
“I have the laws in place,” he told 7.30.
“In the event that someone was injured by an assault gun, I would not open the club, even if I had to open it to have a gun.”
He also said the rules of the Gun Control Act 1968 made it difficult for the state to restrict access to guns, including to the owner.
“The laws are quite vague,” he added.
He says he doesn’t have any plans to close the Gun-Free Zone, but said it was important to find a partner to help run the club as long as possible. “
We would certainly encourage a private member’s club to open to people, if it was safe and open to allow people to have access to firearms.”
He says he doesn’t have any plans to close the Gun-Free Zone, but said it was important to find a partner to help run the club as long as possible.
“It’s not a business, so we don’t have to deal with any licensing or permits, so long as we’re open and the rules are followed,” he explained.
“But if we get to the point where we have to close, I don’t know that that’s the best way to go.”
Gun clubs in Victoria were closed in 2014 after a gunman killed 14 people and injured 22 others in a massacre at a Sydney cafe.
In 2014, gun-owner David Kellebrew lost his gun club after the gunman killed 19 people and wounded 22 others at a cafe.
The gunman was later found not guilty of all charges.