Workplace manslaughter will officially be a crime after the new legislation passed through Victorian Parliament this week, despite not getting the vote of North East MPs.
Workplace Safety Minister Jill Hennessy described the tough new laws as important to protect those touched by tragedy at work.
"I can't begin to imagine the pain felt by the families who have lost a loved one at work. I don't want any families to suffer that type of trauma," she said.
Wodonga-based MP Tim Quilty said the Liberal Democrats questioned if the laws would improve safety.
"We think it is going to generate more pointless corporate compliance activities and less attention to improving safety," he said.
"The premier has been very clear in the media that this legislation is intended to cover suicides.
"What this means is that this bill will deter businesses from employing people they consider to be a suicide risk.
"We know this will cause employers to think twice before employing someone with a history of mental health treatment, but we can go further than that because in turn this will provide long-term disincentives for those with mental health issues from seeking treatment - because they will become unemployable."
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Mr Quilty said the laws did not treat everyone equally because politicians could not be charged with manslaughter for decisions made in Parliament as part of their work.
"Imagine them being held accountable if there are suicides from the shutdown of the Victorian timber industry, leaving no future for thousands of people in regional towns," he said.
Both he and Wangaratta-based MP Tania Maxwell voted against the manslaughter laws.
Ms Maxwell asked a series of questions to Labor MP Gayle Tierney, including how the laws would help encourage more women into business, who would be held responsible if bullying at school led to a suicide, and what would be done about the different laws across borders.
"This cross-border issue - whether it be in this portfolio area or others - is an interesting one and one that, I think, in some ways we are new to in tackling," Ms Tierney said.
"In terms of this law it will pertain to within the borders of Victoria as the legal entity of Victoria."