A law to ban ‘Zombie-Style’ knives, machetes and ‘Ninja swords’ will be proposed this week by Dulwich & West Norwood MP Helen Hayes, following a surge in their use for violent crimes.
The Ten Minute Rule Bill – called the Offensive Weapons Bill – will be proposed in the House of Commons on Tuesday 23 January. This Bill would ban the possession of ‘Zombie-Style’ knives, machetes and ‘Ninja swords’.
The lethal weapons are increasingly being used in serious violence. However, loopholes in the law mean many weapons are not effectively covered by existing bans.
Despite growing calls for a meaningful ban, including from actor Idris Elba and London Mayor Sadiq Khan, the Government has yet to introduce the necessary legislation.
In 2016, when Theresa May was home secretary, the Government said that work was underway to create laws to tackle these dangerous weapons and has re-announced these plans regularly since then ‘while failing to take meaningful action’, according to MP Hayes.
The latest government re-announcement was in August 2023.
The Government has repeatedly promised to implement a ban through “secondary legislation when parliamentary time allows.” However, research by the House of Commons library has found that there were 21 days in 2023 when Parliament rose early with enough time remaining to debate secondary legislation.
This includes 7 days after the Government announced their latest plans for a ban in August 2023.
This Bill would end the delay and implement the ban on so-called ‘Zombie’ knives and other large hunting knives. By including ‘Ninja swords’ in the ban, Helen’s Bill would also close significant gaps in the government’s proposals.
Helen Hayes MP said: “Every life lost to serious violence is a tragedy. It is absolutely devastating for the family and friends of the victims and the entire community. There is fantastic work happening across Dulwich and West Norwood to support young and tackle serious violence. However, this work needs to be backed up by action from the central Government.
“No one needs a hunting knife or zombie-style knife in London – these are dangerous weapons and the appalling injuries they can inflict mean their victims have little chance of survival. Despite their increasing use in serious violence across the country, the Government has failed to take the action needed to take these weapons off our streets.
“We know a proper ban on Zombie knives and similar weapons is needed, but the Conservatives delayed action whilst arguing amongst themselves. My new Bill would outlaw large hunting knives for good.”
Helen’s speech will be broadcast on https://www.parliamentlive.tv/ on Tuesday 23 January following the conclusion of any urgent questions or statements in the House of Commons.