Key messages

  • Anyone entering a health service who is suspected to have a non-firearm weapon should be told they cannot enter.
  • A non-firearm weapon could be a prescribed knife, sword, capsicum spray, crossbow, knuckleduster or martial arts weapon.

Any individual known or suspected to be in possession of a non-firearm weapon should be advised that they cannot enter the health service premises while in possession of the weapon.

Employees identified as carrying a weapon may need counselling or performance management, visitors will be asked to leave the premises, and consumers will be advised about conditions under which clinical care will be provided.

Health service–police partnerships should negotiate agreements and procedures for the storage and collection of non-firearm weapons by Victoria Police, and the return of weapons to owners who have a legitimate reason for having them.

Definition of non-firearm weapons

Non-firearm weapons are defined as ‘prohibited’ and ‘controlled’ weapons under the Control of Weapons Act 1990.

Prohibited weapons are particularly dangerous and should not be available in the community, except to those who can display a specific need for them. Prohibited weapons include:

  • prescribed knives, such as flick knives and butterfly knives
  • swords
  • capsicum spray
  • crossbows
  • knuckledusters
  • martial arts weapons.

Controlled weapons include dangerous but more common weapons, which can only be carried or used with a lawful excuse. They include:

  • spear guns
  • batons
  • bayonets
  • cattle prods.