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â€œThe decision to allow domestic building to continue with limited numbers of workers on a domestic building site will allow hundreds of thousands of Victorians to stay in work and complete the more than 60,000 homes currently under construction in Victoria today,â€ said HIA Executive Director Victoria, Fiona Nield.
â€œDuring the first wave of COVID-19 restrictions and the subsequent lock down, HIA and our members voluntarily adopted a set of industry guidelines and systems to help builders, trade contractors and suppliers safe on a building site which included a limit of 6 workers on site.
â€œFrom the start, the nature of the domestic building sector means that it is possible for workers to socially distance and keep home building projects going.
â€œAs Victoria moves into this stage four lockdown phase, todayâ€™s decision is vital recognition by the Government that the procedures our industry has already put into place are working and that housing construction can practice the necessary safety measures.
â€œThe economics of this decision are also criticial â€“ allowing housing projects to continue will save jobs, limit the risk of longer rental costs and loan charges for home owners, and ensure that Victoriaâ€™s housing supply keeps up with demand.
â€œThere are more than 30,000 houses under construction across Victoria today, and there is more than another 30,000 apartments under construction, mostly in Melbourne.â€
â€œThis is an industry that can navigate its way through this crisis and stay open. Supporting home building with practical arrangements for trade supplies and building products and material will ensure activity can continue with sensible COVID-19 safety controls.
â€œHIA has been providing support for the industry through ourÂ Making space on site guidelinesÂ and other resource released since March. There are now seven industry guidelines for new homes, renovation projects, small commerical projects, kitchen and bathroom projects, home owners, display homes, new home buyers and returning to the workplace. These resources are freely available to assist everyone working in the residential building industry.
â€œThe housing industry is committed to complying with any and all directions from government regarding health and safety and we will continue to work closely with the Victorian government as these changes are implemented,â€ concluded Ms Nield.
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