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Conference – Saturday, 3 August 2024

THE FIRST NATIONAL GUN CONFERENCE is coming soon.

It will be the first time shooting industry leaders will be bringing their thoughts and strengths together, to create a ‘whole-of-industry’ approach to the broader problems that shooters face.

That’s because there are over 90 shooting organisations and hundreds of shooting related businesses in Australia.  There are nearly 900,000 licenced shooters, thousands of clubs and ranges – and we inject over $2 billion into the Australian economy every year. 

Shooting & gun collecting also provides important social benefits – from supporting local towns to the Olympics. That’s why it has not been possible for any one entity to represent that broader picture.

This conference will span those divides.

In order to do this, the conference will not belong to any one entity, but be owned across the wide range of interests. It will give every organisation, club, range, business and shooter an equal voice that they have not had before.


The conference is a unified approach spanning our entire industry

It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession.  I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first.

Ronald Reagan, former President USA

 

What the conference will do

The conference will target key issues affecting the shooting sports across the nation. This means we’ll cover the political challenges being faced in our states and territories, and look at ways we can deal with them.

It will not only help shooting organisations, businesses, and individual shooters see and understand what is happening across the industry, but it’ll help everyone know what they can do. 

It’ll also  send an important message to political parties in ALL states, territories and federally, that we’re quite ready to work across our boundaries, and will fight against bad policies, and bad laws for however long it will take.


We’ll focus on the political
challenges facing shooters

It’s worked before …

This approach has worked in Australia before – and we want to emulate that.

It’s modelled on a similar ‘whole of industry’ approach that was formed in Victoria in the 2000s which resulted in all major political parties coming up with pro-shooting policies for two successive state elections.

However it didn’t last, and there’s a simple reason for that. As is the case with other states and territories, elections only come up every four years which limited our opportunities.

The national approach takes advantage of the fact that in any one year, there will be more than one state, territory or federal election.  

That makes holding annual national conferences not only easier to do, but necessary in our current climate.

… and it starts with Western Australia, where the problems are significant and could spill over our borders.

What the conference will contain

The conference will include presentations and panel discussions covering a wide range of matters.

We’re also providing the major political parties in WA with the opportunity to present their positions ahead of the WA election.  While the focus is on WA, what they say will help set the pace for the conferences to follow.

In other words, they won’t just be talking to WA shooters, but shooters nationally.

That’s why we’ll give fair recognition to the good things that they say, and challenge the bad things they come up with.

National Gun Conference - Electronic targets

National Gun Conference - loading shotgun

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Want to get involved?

The conference will be held at 12 noon (WA time) / 2pm (Eastern time) on Saturday 3 August 2024.

We’ll be sending out updates as that date nears, so if you’re keen to get involved, make sure you join our email list by clicking here.

There will be no charge for participation.

Why now?

The idea of the NGC wasn’t going to be rolled out until around 2028.

However, the deplorable state of the rewrite of firearm laws in Western Australia ahead of the WA state election in early 2025, meant we have brought this forward to this August.

Starting as a ‘concept’

We’re aiming to build the conference into something big – but we’re starting small.

That’s why this first conference will be relatively low-key, as we want to use it to demonstrate the concept across our industry.

It’s also why invitations will be limited – so we can work out what future conferences should look like

National Gun Conference - shotguns

Who will run it?

While Politics Reloaded is behind the concept, our aim is for the NGC to be a partnership with organisations and interests who share the need for this initiative.  It will NOT belong to any one organisation. 

That’s why we’ll run the first year – as a concept where we can show it’s value to the rest of our industry – but then step back to let others run it.

The aim is to hand the running of the conference over to a board that will run it independently of any particular shooting organisation. For the conference to be truly national and representative of our various interests, its governance needs to reflect that.

Who will support it?

Obviously there are conversations that are yet to be had, but we envisage that key supporters will be relevant shooting industry advocacy groups, shooting organisations, and other shooting interests such as dealers and suppliers.