Meg Forbes is a mum, freelance writer, and photographer living in the Redlands, South of Brisbane.
Further easing of restrictions & border reopenings announced
Since early May, Australians have been following the Federal Government's roadmap for the easing of Covid19 restrictions. With Australia succeeding in flattening the curve faster than the government had expected, milestones along this roadmap have periodically been accelerated. On 12 June 2020, the prime minister announced further acceleration for Stage 3, due to begin in July, providing there is no public health advice to the contrary before then, with some additional easing within States and Territories to be brought forward to the second half of June.
The Australian roadmap to easing restrictions is again being accelerated
Nationwide changes to physical distancing rules will include gatherings of more than 100 people being allowed from Stage 3, as well as gatherings of up to 10000 people at outdoor ticketed events such as concerts, festivals, cultural, and sporting events. The cap under Stage 3 will depend upon a venue's size, with crowds limited to one person per four square metres.
Additionally, Australia will allow international students to study at approved institutions from July on a pilot basis, with the universities who will participate in the pilot yet to be announced.
The National Cabinet has agreed to larger gatherings and a pilot that allows some international students to return to Australia
Some of the States and the Territories have also announced further changes that will come into effect over the coming weeks. These include:
The Queensland Government announced today that they intend to reopen the State's borders from 10 July 2020 providing there is no new public health advice to the contrary before then.
The South Australian Government similarly announced today that they will reopen their State's borders from 20 July 2020. They also announced that they will bring forward-moving to Step 3 from 3 July to the 29 June 2020.
Tasmania has announced that they will allow gatherings of up to 80 people from Wednesday 17 June 2020, in indoor and outdoor settings. This will include gyms, pubs, weddings, and funerals.
Australian Capital Territory (ACT):
From 19 June (prior to Step 3 being entered into nationally), venues across the ACT will have a new occupancy level of 100 people per enclosed space. Theatres, cinemas, and concert venues will be able to reopen from this date as well.
The Northern Territory (NT):
The Northern Territory announced that both Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and Kakadu National Park will partially reopen next week from 19 June 2020, although Uluru's Cultural Centre will remain closed. Additionally, the NT announced that they are likely to reopen their border on 20 July 2020 when South Australia does.
As a result, the Federal Government announced that at this stage Western Australia is likely to be the only Australian State or Territory that may not have reopened its borders before the end of July.
The easing of these restrictions will come in time for the 2020 winter school holidays and aims to support Australia's tourism and recovery.
Increased freedom just in time for the winter school holidays - where will you go?