Government to fast-track laws banning sale of knives to minors

The Queensland government’s fast-tracked laws to ban knife sales to minors will be introduced to parliament as it seeks to toughen its approach to youth crime.

Feb 13, 2024, updated Feb 13, 2024
Forensic police are seen with a knife at the scene of a small fire and wounding at the Grange in Brisbane. (AAP Image/Darren England)

Forensic police are seen with a knife at the scene of a small fire and wounding at the Grange in Brisbane. (AAP Image/Darren England)

With a fresh cabinet and premier at the helm Labor will introduce laws to ban the sale of knives to minors following the murder of a grandmother in an alleged stabbing death at a shopping centre, which has prompted urgent calls to tackle youth crime.

It will also introduce laws to decriminalise sex work in the first sitting week of 2024.

Premier Steven Miles announced on Monday his government will seek to legislate the changes as soon as possible in response to ongoing youth crime issues.

“If we can stop the sale of a weapon to a young person, then we will have prevented a crime,” Mr Miles said.

Retailers can begin banning sales of knives and replica firearms when the laws are passed.

The government will move to decriminalise the sex work industry following an independent review completed in April 2023.

The review by the Queensland Law Reform Commission included consultation with stakeholder groups and the public.

It also considered laws in New Zealand and other Australian jurisdictions, including the Northern Territory, Victoria and New South Wales.

“The Law Reform Commission found that the current laws stigmatise sex workers, increase their vulnerabilty to exploitation and violence and fail to protect their human rights,” then attorney-general Shannon Fentiman said in April.

The government is also set to establish a committee that will scrutinise supermarket prices.

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Members of the committee will forge ahead with an inquiry announced by Mr Miles in January.

Opposition Leader David Crisafulli said the first sitting week of parliament in 2024 is not only significant for returning politicians but the entire population.

“It”s a big week for Queenslanders,” he said on Monday.

“We are going to go into the building and we’re going to pursue the issues that matter and fight for change. That’s what good oppositions do.”

Condolence motions will also be held for former member for Ashgrove, John Greenwood and former member for Auburn, Neville Harper.

Parliament is also expected to debate a Greens bill to ban new coal and gas approvals and the phasing out of fossil fuels following state approval of two coal mines in the last month.

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