A Free Church of Scotland minister from the Isle of Skye has spoken at a Government inquiry into firearm licensing regulations following a tragic incident on the island this summer.
Rev Gordon Matheson, minister of Sleat and Strath Free Church, was involved in supporting the community at the time and subsequently. He said that the close-knit community has suffered from trauma following the incident.
Gordon is one of a number of representatives to give evidence at the Scottish Affairs Committee which held an inquiry into firearms licensing in Scotland. Representatives from bodies and organisations included Police Scotland, the Gun Control Network and the Scottish Association for Country Sports.
The Committee has published its report today and has set out a number of recommendations, including a two-tier payment system. They have called on the Government to review the current referee system and have also recommended extra mental health support within shooting organisations.
In the review, Gordon shared the impact on the close-knit community. He was quoted in the report saying: “Here are issues around the subsequent trauma that people have experienced and accessing counselling care for that.” He suggested potential areas for change regarding firearms licensing regulations in Scotland.
The report stated: “We would like to thank everyone who contributed to our enquiry”.
Following the publication of the report, Gordon said: “I appreciate the opportunity to have input. I’m pleased so many sensible and helpful recommendations have come from this process. The systems we have in place to protect our communities will never be foolproof, but they can also improve.”
- Gordon also works part time at the Community Trust in Sleat. They organised Crowdfunders to raise funds to support the victims’ families. Around £85,000 has been raised in total.