The announcement was made following the mass shooting in Keyham

Tributes left at the scene of the deadly Plymouth shooting

Author: Author: By Flora Thompson, Palestinian Authority Home Affairs Correspondent, and Sarah YeomanPosted 24 hours ago
Last updated 24 hours ago

Rules on firearms licensing are tightened following the mass shooting in Plymouth.

Five people were killed when the gunman opened fire in Keyham in August.

Now the government has confirmed that as of November 1 all applications for firearms must be accompanied by a medical document signed by a registered practicing physician.

New statutory guidelines released on Wednesday (October 20) outline how any relevant medical records – especially any information on mental health, neurological disorders and addiction – will need to be reviewed as part of the process.

This means that police, for the first time, will be legally bound to follow guidelines to help improve standards and consistency between UK forces.

Police have also been asked to review an applicant’s social media accounts and financial history, as well as conduct domestic violence checks in cases where officers believe more evidence is needed before authorizing a claim. Licence.

The Home Office said: “The background checks that can be carried out by the police are already extensive, ranging from criminal convictions and previous run-ins with the law, to evidence of civil unrest, unmanaged debts or even dishonesty.

“Existing laws also require a police home visit for first-time applicants, to ensure they have the utmost confidence in an individual’s fitness to own a firearm safely. for the public. Two credible referees for a firearm and one for a shotgun must be provided before a license can be issued. “

Floral tributes left to victims of mass shooting in Plymouth

Jake Davison, 22, killed five people in the Keyham area earlier this year before turning the gun on him.

The apprentice crane operator had received mental health support during the coronavirus lockdown from a local helpline.

His use of social media suggested an obsession with “incel” culture, which means “unintentionally bachelor,” as well as an interest in guns.

Questions remain about how he was authorized to have a firearms license.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) is investigating the Devon and Cornwall forces’ decision to return Davison’s shotgun certificate and weapon to him.

They had been seized in December last year following an assault allegation the previous September and were returned to him in July.

Although the UK has some of the strictest gun laws in the world, Home Secretary Priti Patel said “we must never become complacent about these high standards”, adding: ” These new guidelines prioritize public safety above all else and we have taken considerable care to ensure it is comprehensive and enforceable, having worked closely with the medical, law enforcement and shooting sectors.

The British Medical Association, which helped develop the guidelines, said it was clear that doctors were responsible for providing medical evidence, but that police forces would make the final decision on whether to issue the license.

The organization’s Dr Mark Sanford-Wood said: “As physicians, we support the government’s overall message – that gun ownership is a privilege, not a right – and that guns should be in the hands of those who are considered safe and responsible. “

Debbie Tedds, Chief Constable of Warwickshire Police who leads the work of the National Boards of Chiefs of Police on firearms licensing, welcomed the guidance and said: ‘The police take this issue incredibly seriously. seriousness and any progress on the already extensive controls will help ensure that those who are safe to carry a firearms license will receive one.

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