Sydney (Tribune International, NSW Govt Release, 17 July 2020): The NSW Government will tighten COVID-19 restrictions around “higher risk” activities as the pandemic enters a new phase of community transmission.
From 12:01am Friday, 24 July the following rules will be in force as NSW enters a state of ‘COVID normal’.
- Compliance measures introduced to pubs will be extended to restaurants, bars cafés and clubs. This includes:
- Limiting group bookings to a maximum of 10 people;
- Mandatory COVID-Safe plans and registration as a COVID-Safe business; and
- A digital record must be created within 24 hours.
- Weddings and corporate events will be limited to 150 people subject to the four square metre rule and registration as a COVID-Safe business. Strict COVID-Safe plans must be in place and high-risk activities including choirs and dancing must not occur; and
- Funerals and places of worship will be limited to 100 people, subject to the one person per four square metre rule and a COVID-Safe business registration.
The rules on gatherings remain the same: 20 guests inside the home and 20 for gatherings in a public place. However, as the home is a high transmission area, the NSW Chief Health Officer strongly recommends a COVID-Safe precautionary approach of limiting visitors to the home to 10 people as a general principle.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said this tightening was to reduce the risk of uncontrollable break-outs and ensure NSW stays open for business.
“Unfortunately we must live with COVID-19 and the way it has changed our lives,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“These rules will give businesses and the community a degree of certainty into the foreseeable future, and help NSW avoid uncontrolled virus spread.”
Deputy Premier John Barilaro said the NSW Government continues to work with business and industry to ensure they operate in a COVID-Safe way.
“These measures apply across the state and will also work to protect residents in rural and regional NSW,” Mr Barilaro said.
Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the changes are based on advice received from the Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant.
“We do not want to see community transmission getting to a stage where it is out of control. These restrictions target large gatherings which are high risk settings for transmission of the virus,” Mr Hazzard said.
“We need people to do the right thing: follow the rules; stay home if unwell and get tested, even with the most minimal of symptoms; always maintain physical distancing when out and about; and ensure good hand hygiene.”
Minister for Customer Service Victor Dominello said the new rules will be strictly enforced to protect the wider community.
“Venues should be on notice – NSW Police, Liquor & Gaming inspectors and NSW Health officials are carrying out inspections across the state to ensure COVID-Safe plans are being followed,” Mr Dominello said.
Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said with a heightened risk of COVID-19 outbreaks, the people of NSW need to be on high alert.
“This is the time to be vigilant – we need people to come forward and be tested even if they have the mildest of symptoms, we need businesses to follow and enforce their COVID-Safe plans and we need people to follow the rules,” Dr Chant said.
For the latest information and for the locations of testing clinics go to: www.nsw.gov.au/