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Barbados — Gun Facts, Figures and the Law

StockpilesGun Numbers

Civilian Guns

Number of Privately Owned Firearms

The estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in Barbados is 9,0001 2

Rate of Civilian Firearm Possession per 100 Population

The estimated rate of private gun ownership (both licit and illicit) in Barbados is 3.51 2 firearms per 100 people

Number of Privately Owned Firearms - World Ranking

In a comparison of the number of privately owned guns in 178 countries, Barbados ranked at No. 1663

Rate of Privately Owned Firearms per 100 Population - World Ranking

In a comparison of the rate of private gun ownership in 178 countries, Barbados ranked at No. 762

Number of Registered Firearms

The number of registered guns in Barbados is reported to be

1984: 3,0004

Rate of Registered Firearms per 100 Population

The rate of registered guns per 100 people in Barbados is

1984: 1.175

Government Guns

Number of Military Firearms

The defence forces of Barbados are reported to have 1,4006 7 firearms

Number of Law Enforcement Firearms

Police in Barbados are reported to have 1,6006 8 firearms

ImpactsDeath and Injury

Homicides (any method)

ChartIn Barbados, annual homicides by any means total

2013: 259
2012: 229 10
2011: 30
2010: 299 10 11 12
2009: 199 10 11 12 13
2008: 28
2007: 28
2006: 36
2005: 29
2004: 23
2003: 31
2002: 27
2001: 25
2000: 20
1999: 2311
1998: 20
1995: 16

Rate of Homicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn Barbados, the annual rate of homicide by any means per 100,000 population is

2013: 8.789
2012: 7.779 10
2011: 10.65
2010: 10.349 10 11 12
2009: 6.819 10 11 12 13
2008: 10.09
2007: 10.13
2006: 13.09
2005: 10.06
2004: 8.45
2003: 11.45
2002: 10.02
2001: 9.32
2000: 7.49
1999: 8.611
1998: 7.5
1995: 6.1

Gun Homicides

ChartIn Barbados, annual firearm homicides total

2013: 99
2012: 7
2011: 14
2010: 10
2008: 1314
2007: 6
2006: 14
2005: 7
2004: 9
2000: 811 14
1999: 911
1998: 7

Rate of Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Barbados, the annual rate of firearm homicide per 100,000 population is

2013: 3.125
2012: 2.43
2011: 4.88
2010: 3.50
2008: 5.114
2007: 2.4
2006: 5.5
2005: 2.7
2004: 3.6
2000: 3.011 14
1999: 3.411
1998: 2.6

Proportion of Homicides Committed With a Gun

ChartIn Barbados, the percentage of homicides committed with a firearm is reported to be

2013: 36%9
2012: 32%
2011: 47%
2010: 34%
2000: 40.0%11
1999: 39.1%
1998: 35.0%

Suicides (any method)

ChartIn Barbados, annual suicides by any means total

2008: 115
2006: 9
2005: 1
2004: 3
2001: 215 16
2000: 1015

Rate of Suicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn Barbados, the annual rate of suicide by any means per 100,000 population is

2008: 0.415
2006: 3.5
2005: 0.4
2004: 1.2
2001: 0.815 17 5
2000: 4.0

ProductionGun Industry

Regulation of Firearm Makers

In Barbados, the manufacture of small arms, ammunition and/or their components is permitted only if the maker holds a valid licence18

TransfersGun Trade and Trafficking

Regulation of Firearm Exports

In Barbados, firearm and ammunition exports are limited by transfer control law19 18

Small Arms Exports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition exports from Barbados is reported by Customs to be US$112,61920 (2011)

Regulation of Firearm Imports

In Barbados, firearm and ammunition imports are limited by transfer control law19 18 21

Small Arms Imports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition imports to Barbados is reported by Customs to be US$587,35520 (2011)

Regulation of Arms Brokers

In Barbados, the activities of arms brokers and transfer intermediaries are not specifically regulated by law22

End User Certificates

Customs regulations in Barbados do not include22 certification of the intended end user of any small arms or ammunition transfer, and/or a written declaration of its intended end use

MeasuresGun Regulation

Firearm Regulation - Guiding Policy

The regulation of guns in Barbados is categorised as restrictive23

Firearm Law

Guiding gun control legislation in Barbados includes the Firearms Act 199824

Firearm Regulation Authority

Guns in Barbados are regulated by the Minister responsible for Police Administration25

Right to Possess Firearms

In Barbados, the right to private gun ownership is not guaranteed by law26 27 22

Restricted Firearms and Ammunition

Regulation of Automatic Weapons

In Barbados, private possession of fully automatic weapons is permitted under licence22

Regulation of Semiautomatic Assault Weapons

In Barbados, private possession of semi-automatic assault weapons is permitted under licence22

Regulation of Handguns

In Barbados, private possession of handguns (pistols and revolvers) is permitted under licence22

Gun Ownership and Possession

In Barbados, only licensed gun owners18 28 may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition

Genuine Reason Required for Firearm Possession

Applicants for a gun owner’s licence in Barbados are required to establish a genuine reason to possess a firearm, for example collection28 29 30

Minimum Age for Firearm Possession

The minimum age for gun ownership in Barbados is 25 years31

Gun Owner Background Checks

An applicant for a firearm licence in Barbados must pass a background check which considers criminal, mental health and addiction31 28 records

Reference Required for Firearm Licence

In Barbados, third party character references for each gun licence applicant are not required22

Domestic Violence and Firearms

Where a past history, or apprehended likelihood of family violence exists, the law in Barbados does not stipulate22 that a gun licence should be denied or revoked

Firearm Safety Training

In Barbados, an understanding of firearm safety and the law, tested in a theoretical and/or practical training course is not required22 for a firearm licence

Gun Owner Licensing Period

In Barbados, gun owners must re-apply and re-qualify for their firearm licence every one year32

Limit on Number of Guns

Licensed firearm owners in Barbados are permitted to possess any number of firearms22

Limit on Quantity, Type of Ammunition

Licensed firearm owners in Barbados are permitted to possess any quantity of ammunition22

Firearm Registration

Civilian Gun Registration

In Barbados, the law does not require22 that a record of the acquisition, possession and transfer of each privately held firearm be retained in an official register

Gun Dealer Record Keeping

In Barbados, licensed firearm dealers are required33 34 to keep a record of each firearm or ammunition purchase, sale or transfer on behalf of a regulating authority

Gun Sales and Transfers

Regulation of Private Gun Sales

In Barbados, the private sale and transfer of firearms is permitted22

Regulation of Dealer Gun Sales

In Barbados, dealing in firearms by way of business without a valid gun dealer’s licence is unlawful35 33

Background Checks for Private Gun Sales

The buyer of a firearm in a private sale in Barbados is not obliged22 to pass official background checks before taking possession

Background Checks for Dealer Gun Sales

The buyer of a firearm from a licensed gun dealer in Barbados is not obliged22 to pass official background checks before taking possession

Waiting Period for Gun Possession

In Barbados, the minimum wait for a lawful firearm purchase to be completed is undetermined22

Regulation of Gun Shows

In Barbados, gun shows and temporary firearm dealing events are not regulated22 in law

Storage and Transport of Guns and Ammunition

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Private

Firearm regulations in Barbados include36 37 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of private firearms and ammunition by licensed gun owners

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Dealer

Firearm regulations in Barbados include33 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by licensed arms dealers

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Government

Government regulations in Barbados do not include22 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by state entities

Firearm and Ammunition Transport Regulations

Regulations in Barbados do not include22 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition while in transit

Marking and Tracing Guns and Ammunition

Firearm Marking

In Barbados, a unique identifying mark on each firearm is not required by law22

Firearm Tracing

In Barbados, state authorities carry out38 recognised arms tracing and tracking procedures

Ballistic Record of Firearms and Ammunition

In Barbados, the ballistic characteristics of each civilian firearm and its ammunition are not22 recorded in a register

Carrying Guns

Carrying Guns Openly in Public

In Barbados, carrying a firearm in plain view in a public place is prohibited39

Penalty for Illicit Firearm Possession

In Barbados, the maximum penalty for unlawful possession of a firearm40 is two years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine41

Collection, Amnesty and Destruction Programmes

Authorities in Barbados are not known to have implemented voluntary firearm surrender schemes, and/or weapon seizure programmes in order to reduce the number of illicit firearms in circulation

Destruction and Disposal Policy

In Barbados, it is not state policy22 to destroy surplus, collected and seized firearms rather than return them to the secondary arms market

MeasuresInternational Controls

Regional Agreements

Organization of American States

On 14 November 1997, as a member of the Organisation of American States (OAS), Barbados adopted the Inter-American Convention against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Explosives, Ammunition and Other Related Materials (CIFTA), a legally binding multilateral treaty of which the OAS is depository. The CIFTA Convention has since been signed and ratified42 43 by Barbados

Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development

The Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development, a diplomatic initiative aimed at addressing the interrelations between armed violence and development, was not signed44 by Barbados.

United Nations Arms Trade Treaty

The United Nations Arms Trade Treaty has been signed and ratified45 by Barbados

United Nations Firearms Protocol

The United Nations Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition has been signed and ratified46 by Barbados

United Nations Small Arms Programme of Action UNPoA

UNPoA Commitment

On 21 July 2001, Barbados committed to a consensus decision of the United Nations to adopt, support and implement the UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects47

UNPoA Implementation Monitor Score

In its UN small arms Programme of Action Implementation Monitor (PoAIM Phase 1), the Small Arms Survey scored Barbados against its commitments to the PoA, then ranked it at No. 15748 49 50 51 among 159 Member States

UNPoA National Reporting

Under the terms of its 2001 commitment to the United Nations small arms Programme of Action, Barbados has submitted one or more national reports52 21 on its implementation of the UNPoA

UNPoA National Point of Contact

In Barbados, a National Point of Contact to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has been designated53 21

UNPoA Civil Society Involvement and Support

In National Reports of Barbados submitted to the UN from 2001 to 2010, a history of substantive cooperation with civil society in support of UNPoA activities was not apparent21

UNPoA International Assistance – Donor

Funds for UNPoA implementation have not been donated21 by Barbados to other UN Member States

United Nations Small Arms Register

According to the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms, Barbados has not declared54 its small arms exports in one or more annual National Reports on Arms Exports.

United Nations Membership

In the UN List of Member States, Barbados has been a Member State of the United Nations since 199655

Wassenaar Arrangement

The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls and Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies does not list56 Barbados as a Participating State


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