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New Victorian rental laws to help prevent furniture tip-over incidents

Kidsafe Victoria commends the Andrew’s government and Fairer Safer Housing Victoria for passing critical reforms for Victorian renters in relation to child safety.

A bill passed in September reviewing the Residential Tenancies Act 1997, will enable renters to make minor approved modifications to their home without requiring permission from the landlord. This includes the act of securing televisions and other heavy items to walls and floors to prevent tip-over incidents and will be effective in 2019.

Melanie Courtney, CEO of Kidsafe Victoria, welcomed the reforms, advising that, “Empowering families to keep their kids safe from furniture tipovers is a move Kidsafe strongly supports and is a first for child safety around Australia. We look forward to strong communication from the State Government with real estate agents, landlords and tenants to support the implementation of the legislation,” said Ms Courtney.

Children's curiosity and lack of awareness of danger placed them at increased risk of injury from TV and furniture tip overs. Approximately 22 children under the age of 9 have died in Australia since 2001 from toppling furniture or televisions.

Kidsafe Victoria is urging all landlords to proactively take action and grant any requests for child saving minor modifications until the law becomes active.

For more information on the reformed Victorian rental laws, please visit https://engage.vic.gov.au/fairersaferhousing