Meg Forbes is a mum, freelance writer, and photographer living in the Redlands, South of Brisbane.
Which restrictions will be relaxed in your state?
Following a meeting of the National Cabinet on Friday 29 May 2020, a number of COVID19 restrictions will be lifting across Australia during the month of June. However, each state and territory has decided upon their own pathway out of COVID19, resulting in a significant difference between them in terms of the restrictions. This article outlines changes to the restrictions across Australia, in alphabetical order
The Australian Capital Territory has now had 27 consecutive days of no new cases and already enjoys a few eased restrictions including indoor and outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people, as well as up to 10 people being allowed to dine within restaurants, pubs, and clubs at a time. From tomorrow, residents of the ACT will once again be allowed to visit New South Wales for recreation and holidays.
Northern Territory (NT)
The Northern Territory has had 29 consecutive days of no new cases, and from Friday 5 June the current 2-hour limit on indoor activities within the NT will be lifted. Patrons to bars and clubs will be allowed to visit without ordering sit-down food, with cinemas and amusement parks reopening. Finally, team sports will again be permitted providing sports grounds follow the guidelines for approved seating arrangements.
New South Wales
New South Wales has currently had 1 day with no new cases. From tomorrow, New South Wales residents will be able to go on recreational trips within the whole of their state and up to 50 people will be able to attend restaurants, cafes, pubs, and clubs together providing there is enough space for 4 square metres per patron. Museums, art galleries, and libraries across New South Wales will reopen, and beauty salons will be permitted to serve up to 10 clients at a time.
Queensland has now had 4 consecutive days of no new cases. From noon on the 1st June unlimited travel including overnight stays will be permitted within Queensland, and cafes, restaurants, pubs, and clubs will be allowed to have up to 20 patrons in each area as defined by their industry-approved COVID safe plan.
South Australia has currently had 4 consecutive days with no new cases. On 1 June restrictions will ease, allowing beauty salons, gyms, art galleries, museums, and cinemas to reopen with a maximum of 20 patrons.
Tasmania has currently had 15 consecutive days with no new cases of COVID19. However, Tasmania will be easing restrictions on 15 June, including allowing up to 20 people to gather in indoor and outdoor venues such as restaurants, cinemas, and museums.
Victoria has at present had 0 consecutive days with no new cases of COVID19. However, from 1 June people will be allowed to have up to 20 people gather in their homes, including members of their own families. Similarly, restaurants, cafes, and the dining areas of pubs will be allowed to seat up to 20 patrons, and swimming pools will reopen for lap training with a maximum of 20 people per pool and 3 people in each lane.
Public places such as museums, libraries, art galleries, and zoos will also reopen for up to 20 people in each separate space, and residents will be able to stay overnight for recreation and holidays across Victoria. Beauty salons and massage parlours will also be permitted to reopen for up to 20 patrons at a time, subject to social distancing guidelines.
Finally, Western Australia has currently had 1 day with no new cases of COVID19. Travel will reopen across the state, except for entry into restricted areas such as the Kimberley and vulnerable Aboriginal communities. The easing of further restrictions is likely to be announced around the middle of June.
As can be seen, Australia is slowly opening up following the strict restrictions that were introduced to protect all citizens during March when the nation was experiencing exponential growth of COVID19. The federal and state governments are consistently monitoring the spread of the virus and lifting restrictions when safe to do so. The lifting of many travel restrictions is arriving in time for the winter school holidays. The National Cabinet will meet again towards the end of June, so watch this space for further announcements in a month's time.