Master Builders Victoria today expressed frustration and disappointment that controversial workplace manslaughter laws have now passed the Victorian Legislative Assembly unamended.

CEO of Master Builders Victoria Rebecca Casson said despite the organisation’s disappointment with the new laws passed today, it would continue to advocate on behalf of its members for workplace health and safety laws that have safety as the number one objective.

“Our position has consistently been that we could not support any law that does not have safety as its number one objective. We have always argued that any new laws need to be workable, proportionate, fair, support continuing collaboration on safety and avoid unintended outcomes,” Ms Casson said.

“We believe that the legislation which has now been passed, fails that test.”

Ms Casson said the new legislation had the potential to damage worksite culture, disproportionately impact Victoria’s small and family business owners, and potentially have a devastating impact on their mental health.

“Our members care deeply for the people they work with. We are concerned that this legislation will now create divided and unfair worksites across Victoria. Master Builders Victoria believes workplace safety is everyone's responsibility, not just the boss. Everybody. Every workplace. Every day.”

“Going forward, we will continue to advocate on behalf of our members for future legislation that has safety as its number one objective.”

Ms Casson said Master Builders Victoria would now turn its attention to collaborating with WorkSafe to educate and support their members.

“We will work with our members to ensure that they are aware of the new laws and how the implementation of this new legislation could potentially impact their business,” she said.

“Our support will include helping our members to continue to focus on accident prevention and providing the safest possible workplaces across Victoria.”