19 APRIL 2023
POLLIES HIT THE PISTOL RANGE
The Parliamentary sitting week started off with a bang on Sunday as Members and Senators gathered at the Sporting Shooters Pistol Club ACT (SSAA ACT) to try their hand at pistol shooting.
Parliamentary Friends of Shooting co-chairs Senator Bridget McKenzie and The Member for Hunter Dan Repacholi MP hosted the event for their colleagues and invited guests to demonstrate the safety, skill and enjoyment of pistol shooting.
Under the expert guidance of SSAA ACT volunteers and instructors, Members, Senators and guests had their hand at trying different handgun models and sights as well as trying different disciplines such as free shoot and timed target shooting.
Senator McKenzie said demystifying shooting and advocating for the benefits of sport shooting was the reason she founded and continues to co-chair the Parliamentary Friends of Shooting group.
“Sadly, we continue to see vilification of law-abiding firearm holders but the sport has many benefits and can be enjoyed by people of all ages and abilities,
“Sporting and recreational shooters and hunters play a key role in the management of feral pests that pose a significant threat to Australian primary production, the environment and Australia’s biodiversity,” Senator McKenzie said.
“PFOS events allow us to show to others and have them learn for themselves the skill and discipline involved in sporting and recreational shooting.” Senator McKenzie said.
Senators Perin Davey, Hollie Hughes, Ralph Babet, Pauline Hanson, as well as House Members Andrew Willcox, Anne Stanley, Meryl Swanson, Ross Vasta, Ian Goodenough were seen enjoying some friendly competition while trying a range of handguns and sights.
“It is so encouraging to see so many Senators and MPs come out on a Sunday afternoon before a sitting week, Senator McKenzie said.
“While many have tried shooting before, we did have a few newbies too and the feedback has been positive all round with everyone keen for another shoot in the near future.” Senator McKenzie said.
“The day was a fantastic event. It was great to show pollies and staff what I do and how the wonderful sport of shooting works.” Mr Repacholi said.
Senator McKenzie shared a big thank you to SSAA ACT volunteers who assisted pollies and guests on safety and technique throughout the afternoon, as well as to the Shooting Industry Foundation Australia who helped organise the day.
“There are 1.5 million licensed firearm owners in Australia – of which I am one – and I’m here, alongside my co-chair and industry bodies, to continue to advocate for the enjoyment shooting brings and to see the harmful stereotypes upon the sport removed.” Senator McKenzie said.