An Update on Workplace Manslaughter Laws


We have previously discussed about the discussions made about the State Government’s workplace manslaughter laws. It is still ongoing and more issues are being addressed. For the sake of consistency, here’s a brief summary of the previous discussions and issues raised pertaining to the manslaughter laws the Andrews Labor Government will introduce. The new laws state that employers whose negligence result to an employee death will have face up to 20 years in prison. In line with this, under the Occupational Health & Safety Act 2004, employers will be fined $16 million and those individuals who negligently caused the death of an employee will have also have to face 20 years in prison if proven guilty.

For the latest discussion regarding this matter, the Victorian government decided to introduce the criminal offence of ‘workplace manslaughter’ into the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHS Act) where Master Builders Victoria or MBV decided to take part in the taskforce. The organization’s decision to join the taskforce is their way of showing commitment on making the workplace safe for all workers. At the same time, it is to ensure that any changes made to the existing law will not compromise any safety outcomes.

Of course, it is normal that there are issues raised and MBV is still concerned that these issues have not been heard still. Members of the organization are concerned that it seems like the process was not given ample time to be analyzed and some items that are listed ‘non-negotiable’ remain unchanged.

The recently concluded discussions within the taskforce may have finalized some points about the legislation. “A strategic campaign is being developed and deployed to try and address those concerns that have not been heard by Government.”

However, rest assured that the MBV will continue to engage with all of the members of the taskforce as well as the stakeholders and the members of the Parliament.

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