Firearms or weapons in a healthcare service pose a serious risk to the health and safety of everyone within that service.
Under occupational health and safety legislation, health services are required to manage the potential risks posed by firearms, weapons or dangerous articles, and to provide a safe environment for all visitors and staff.
Victoria has developed a series of guiding principles to assist local health services to promote the deterrence, detection and management of firearms and weapons, and to develop their own operational policies and procedures.
These principles promote formal partnerships between health services and local police to educate health workers on dealing with weapons, and to form joint agreements governing all aspects of weapons management.
Weapons and the law
There is legislative guidance for health services about how to keep people with mental illness safe from weapons.
Weapons & firearms – how to manage and respond
There are guidelines for how health service staff should manage firearms and other weapons.
Firearms in health services
Under the Firearms Act 1996, any person wishing to carry or use a firearm must hold a valid licence.
Weapons - non-firearm - in health services
Anyone suspected to have a non-firearm weapon should be told they cannot enter the building with a weapon.
Dangerous articles in health services
Services should assess the risks associated with any dangerous items and use a risk management approach.
Firearms and weapons policies and procedures
Services should assess the risks of any dangerous articles and apply proactive risk management.
Weapons legislation – how to comply
Policies and procedures must comply with the Firearms Act 1996 and the Control of Weapons Act 1990.
Reviewed 28 May 2015