THE Premier Daniel Andrews succeeded in beefing up the protective measures but more conditions are set to follow in the next few days.
Here’s what Mr Andrews had to say:
On Tuesday night, National Cabinet took another big step. I want to tell you why and let you know what we need you to do right now.
The Prime Minister and other first ministers recognised that Victoria is currently grappling with a more imminent threat than most other states – because we have more cases.
Because of this, we agreed states and territories will soon need to take individual measures – because this is moving at a different speed in different places.
I am pleased that National Cabinet has made that decision – and tonight we’ll discuss it further.
We said there would be a Stage 2 and that’s what we’re doing today. But I’ll be up front with you, there will also be a Stage 3.
We need more time to get our health system ready for what’s coming. Every country in the world that is running ahead of us would give anything to have had more time.
Last night, the Prime Minister went through the details of Stage 2 restrictions on non-essential venues and activities. In Victoria, those will begin at midnight tonight.
We don’t take these actions lightly but to put it bluntly: if we don’t slow this thing down, we won’t just have people waiting in line for Centrelink – we’ll have people waiting in line for machines to help them breathe.
I know this is stressful and I know this is scary. The measures we already have in place are difficult, and these will be harder again. I want to reassure you that things like supermarkets, pet
rol stations, banks, post offices and bottle shops – and a number of other essential services – will be staying open.
But I want to be very clear: the more people ignore the rules and ignore the advice – the more this virus will continue to spread.
There is no social occasion or celebration that’s worth more than a human life.
For Victorians that means if you can stay home, you must stay home.
We are all being asked to make sacrifices. Because if we don’t, people will die.
A full list of Stage 1 and 2 restrictions will be available at coronavirus.vic.gov.au. Businesses seeking advice about whether they are affected can also call the Business Victoria coronavirus hotline on 13 22 15.
Gippsland South MP Danny O’Brien has supported the Premier’s initiatives.
From midnight tonight the following activities must cease:
*please note this list includes venues and activities that were prohibited in stage 1 restrictions
- Pubs, registered and licensed clubs (excluding bottle shops attached to these venues), hotels (excluding accommodation), restaurants and cafes – delivery and take away can remain operational;
- Food courts – delivery and take away can remain operational;
- Auction houses;
- Real estate auctions and open house inspections – private appointments for inspection are permissible;
- Outdoor and indoor markets – food markets will continue to operate;
- Hairdressers and barber shops – up to 30 minute appointments, applying the 1 person per 4 square metre rule in the premises, are permitted;
- Beauty therapy, tanning, waxing, nail salons, tattoo parlours;
- Spa and massage parlours;
- Cinemas, entertainment venues, casinos, gaming or gambling venues, and night clubs;
- Strip clubs, brothels and sex-on-premises venues;
- Concert venues, theatres, arenas, auditoriums, stadiums;
- Amusement parks and arcades;
- Indoor and outdoor play centres;
- Community and recreation centres – facilities may remain open for the purpose of hosting essential voluntary or public services, such as food banks or homeless services;
- Gyms, health clubs, fitness centres, yoga, barre and spin facilities, saunas, bathhouses and wellness centres;
- Boot camps, personal training operating outside and inside – for outside events, limited to groups of no more than 10 people, social distancing rules must be applied;
- Social sporting-based activities;
- Swimming pools;
- Caravan and camping parks – excluding permanent residents or as an interim abode where the primary residence is not available;
- Galleries, museums, national institutions and historic sites;
- Libraries, community centres and youth centres;
- Local government non-essential facilities and services (such as community halls, clubs, RSLs);
- Religious gatherings, places of worship;
- Weddings – weddings with a maximum attendance of no more than 5 people, where the 1 person per 4 square metre rule applies, are permitted; and
- Funerals – funerals attended by a maximum of no more than 10 people, where the 1 person per 4 square metre rule applies, are permitted.
Next steps and support
The National Cabinet, comprised of the Prime Minister and state and territory leaders including the Victorian Premier, have made clear that further restrictions are likely. At this stage I don’t know what that may involve, but we have been pressing the state government to ensure there is clarity about what might be considered essential and non-essential businesses and activities in future.
You can find out more information on health issues, business and personal support from the state government here: www.coronavirus.vic.gov.auThe Australian Government also has a very useful website with lots of information, advice and support options for individuals and businesses here: www.australia.gov.au
What to do if you become unwell
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, breathing difficulties, cough, sore throat, and fatigue or tiredness. If you suspect that you or someone you know might have coronavirus, please call the dedicated hotline on 1800 675 398. You can also use this handy symptom checker.
To seek medical help from a doctor or hospital, call ahead of time to book an appointment and ensure they are aware of your symptoms.
For everyone else, please stay at home if you can, stay at least 1.5 metres away from others and wash your hands.