IFA Countryside recently had a crucial meeting with Minister of State at the Department of Justice, James Browne, to discuss recommendations made by the Firearm Expert Committee (FEC). This meeting served as an opportunity to address areas for improvement in the firearm licensing system, in response to an invitation from the Minister following a submission made by IFA.

The FEC, mandated with evaluating all types of firearms currently licensed in the State, conducted a comprehensive assessment to determine their appropriate use within the existing licensing system. Alongside this evaluation, the committee also examined other essential firearm licensing matters, including the potential implementation of conditions on firearm certificates, the consideration of limitations on the number of firearms an individual may possess, and any other pertinent firearms licensing issues relevant during the Committee’s term.

IFA Countryside Chairman Brian Rushe said that shooting plays a crucial role in the lives of farmers, gun clubs and rural communities serving as an indispensable tool for effective pest control allowing them to mitigate the significant income losses caused by crop damage and livestock predation.

IFA Countryside Secretary, William Shortall, shared his insights, saying, “This meeting provided us with a valuable platform to discuss and propose crucial improvements to the firearm licensing system. We are advocating for standardised licensing processes to ensure consistent application of legislation, the establishment of an online application system for streamlined efficiency, and the introduction of an appeals mechanism to ensure fair and just outcomes.”