BASC hits out at police licence cost-cutting

Shooting chiefs have hit out at police cost-cutting, after gun licence applicants were forced to foot the bill for their own medical reports.

BASC is urging shooters to blow the whistle on police forces that it claims are breaching Home Office guidelines, by asking applicants to get their own medical reports from their GP.

The call comes after BASC was tipped off that Dyfed-Powys Police was forcing shotgun and firearm certificate applicants to stump up for their own GP letters. BASC said this was breaching current guidelines and when it wrote to the force it was told the move was to save cash.

BASC said it was concerned other forces looking to cut costs could follow suit and advised members if they knew of any cases to let the organisation know. Shooters should make a formal written complaint to the force’s professional standards or complaints and discipline department and send BASC’s firearms department a copy of the letter and any response.

BASC’s director of firearms, Bill Harriman, said: “We understand that there are serious staffing problems at Dyfed-Powys Police but that is no excuse to discriminate against applicants who are ill or who have a disability. If you come across a police force which has done as the Dyfed-Powys Police force has done then make a complaint and don’t be afraid to do so. Give us the details, we will take action. This is something that needs to be stopped as it is in breach of Home Office guidelines and police forces need to know they cannot get away with making up their own policies to save cash.”

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