Knife laws in NSW, Queensland welcomed by retailers and malls alike

(Source: Bigstock)

Retailers expressed support and welcomed a recent proposal to authorise the NSW Police to ‘wand’ or scan people for knives without a warrant in designated areas – part of proposed legislation seeking to reduce knife crimes and modelled after Queensland’s Jack’s Law.

“The measures proposed by the NSW Premier are a step in the right direction, however, there is detail we are keen to work on, particularly on what constitutes a ‘weapons-related offence’ and the proposed time frames of ‘authority’, to ensure these laws work seamlessly and are effective for the community,” said Angus Nardi, CEO of the Shopping Centre Council of Australia.

“Consistency and effectiveness are key and we’re ready to ensure our members are aligned with these standards. We would also like to see better alignment across states and territories around retail crime legislation,” said Paul Zahra, CEO of the Australian Retailers Association.

The proposed powers will be made available in circumstances where a relevant weapon or knife crime happened within the past six months.

The legislation will also make it illegal to sell knives to a child under the age of 18 with provisions for retailers selling to young people who need a knife for their work and study.

Those who will be caught violating this will face increased penalties.

“In recent weeks and months, we have all borne witness to the devastating outcomes of knife-related violence,” said NSW Premier Chris Minns.

“Our communities are still in mourning, but it’s essential that we step up to take immediate action to send a clear message that NSW will simply not accept these kinds of crimes.”

A series of stabbing incidents have occurred in New South Wales in recent weeks, including the stabbing event at Westfield Bondi Junction on April 13, which killed six people.

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