How a Conservative-Led Australia Ended Mass Killings – The New York Times

Australia has had no killings of five or more since a 1996 rampage spurred a tightening of laws. Other forms of gun violence have fallen as well.

Mick Roelandts of the New South Wales Police in 1997, examining weapons that were handed over through a government buyback program. CreditDavid Gray/Reuters

 

Total intentional gun deaths fell by half in the decade after the 1996 restrictions were put in place, even as Australia’s population grew nearly 14 percent. The rate of gun suicides per 100,000 people dropped 65 percent from 1995 to 2006, and the rate of gun homicides fell 59 percent, according to a 2010 study by Andrew Leigh of Australian National University and Christine Neill of Wilfrid Laurier University.

When the data in that study is updated to include the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, as well as the numbers going back to 1968, several facts emerge.

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