Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Victoria lockdown ends – but home visitors still banned

VICTORIA, AUSTRALIA

A range of restrictions will ease across Victoria tonight following a reduction in community transmission of COVID-19, but visitors to homes are still not permitted, Victoria’s Chief Health Officer announced today.

Professor Brett Sutton (pictured) said the state’s lockdown would be lifted state-wide from 11.59pm tonight, as the state today recorded 10 new COVID-19 cases.

“There are still thousands of Victorians in quarantine and people will need to remain vigilant to stay on top of this highly infectious Delta variant,” he said.

“That means COVIDSafe behaviours like checking in everywhere, every time, wearing a mask and getting vaccinated when you’re eligible will remain key as we cautiously open up again.    “

From 11.59pm, Victorians will be able to leave their homes for any reason. Restaurants and cafes can also reopen for seated service. Retail and beauty and personal care will open in line with density limits, as will entertainment venues and community facilities.

“To every Victorian who checked in with our QR system, who got tested and quarantined, and stayed home to slow the spread of this virus, thank you – it’s because of you we’ve able to get on top of this Delta outbreak and open up our state,” said Premier Daniel Andrews.

The Authorised Worker List will no longer apply, meaning businesses and venues can reopen with capacity and density limits of 1 person per 4sqm. Victoria will return to the rule that ‘if you can work from home, you should work from home’ but office workers will be able to return up to 25% or up to 10 people, whichever is greater.

In welcome news for families, kids can get back to the classroom with schools reopening for onsite learning to all students from tomorrow.

Public gatherings will be allowed with up to 10 people, with infants under 12 months not included in the cap.

“However, due to the significant transmission risk we have seen throughout the pandemic, gatherings in the home are still not permitted. People will only be able to book accommodation with their household, intimate partner or single bubble person,” Prof Sutton said.

People will be free to visit ski fields again, but due to the higher risk in these settings entry to Victoria’s alpine resorts will require a COVID test and receipt of a negative result within 72 hours prior to visiting. Children under 12 years of age are not required to be tested.

Live music venues, dance classes and physical recreation facilities, including gyms, will all open with density requirements of 1 person per 4sqm.

A maximum of 50 people will be permitted at weddings. Funerals will also have a cap of 50 mourners, plus those conducting the funeral. Infants under 12 months are not included in the cap for either.

Masks will continue to be required everywhere indoors and outdoors (except private residences), unless an exception applies.

“Today is welcome news but with thousands of Victorians in quarantine, we need to remain vigilant to keep each other safe – so please check in everywhere, every time, wear a mask and get vaccinated as soon as you’re eligible,” said Minister for Health, Martin Foley. 

The City of Wagga Wagga, Hay Shire Council, Lockhart Shire Council and Murrumbidgee Council will no longer be included in the cross border bubble.

These local government areas will be included under the Extreme Risk Zone from 11:59pm tonight, in line with the rest of NSW and residents will need a Specified Worker Permit, transit permit, or an exemption to enter Victoria.

For more information on the latest COVIDSafe settings please visit coronavirus.vic.gov.au.  

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