Victorian emergency boss quits over workplace bullying

Victoria's Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley.
Victoria's Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley.

Victoria's Emergency Management Commissioner has resigned.

Craig Lapsley stood down from the top job, which he has held since 2014, Emergency Services Minister James Merlino said in a statement on Tuesday.

"It has become apparent that Mr Lapsley has not always conducted himself in accordance with the very high standards expected of him, and that, as a result, the ... workplace has been very difficult and challenging for a number of his staff," the minister said.

"This is very disappointing both to me as Emergency Services Minister and to the government generally.

"I have previously made it clear to Mr Lapsley that bullying and inappropriate workplace behaviour will not be tolerated and that remains very firmly the case.”

In a statement, Mr Lapsley acknowledged his behaviour.

"I am aware there has been criticism of my conduct, and I recognise and acknowledge that on occasion I engaged in inappropriate workplace behaviour that was abrasive and confronting and that I did not treat people with the great respect they deserved," he said.

"Upon reflection I believe I could have done much more to show and communicate my unquestioned admiration of, and support for the people who are at the heart of the state’s emergency response system.

"I deeply regret the instances where my conduct fell short of the very high standards expected of me, and I apologise sincerely to those people affected."