12-Year-Olds To Be Granted Gun Use

Children as young as 12 years old are to be be allowed supervised use of shotguns or air guns, under new laws.

Justice Minister David Ford has confirmed the move, which follows a public consultation in February to consider lowering the age at which young people can apply for a firearms certificate.

Under the current law, only teenagers over the age of 16 can apply for supervised use of certain weapons.

A firearms licence allows those over 16 to use airguns, shotguns or a .22 Rimfire rifle while under supervision of a person over the age of 21.

But now, the Justice Department has said the age will be lowered to 12.

A spokeswoman said: "Following public consultation and having considered the view of the Chief Constable, the Justice Minister David Ford has decided that the age at which a young person may have supervised access to air guns or shotguns will be reduced to 12 years of age.

"This will require further consideration of the detail to ensure appropriate supervision by a suitably experienced adult."


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