From 11:59pm tomorrow Victoria’s south west and other regional communities across the state will take the third step along the roadmap to COVID Normal.
Labor Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney said the announcement was a testament to the determination of regional communities to stay the course and drive numbers down.
The 14-day average in regional Victoria is 3.6 and with no mystery cases. It means communities outside Metropolitan Melbourne can take another step along the reopening roadmap.
In the Third Step you can form household bubbles. This will allow households across regional Victoria to choose one other household to be in a bubble. You can visit them in their home. They can visit you in your home – with up to a total of five visitors.
If you are catching up with friends and family, we encourage you to do it outside. All the latest evidence says being outdoors reduces the risk. To that end, people will be able to gather in groups of ten in outdoor public places, without a limit on the number of households.
Outdoor contact and non-contact sport will begin for regional Victorians aged 18 and under, as well as outdoor non-contact sport for adults. And there’ll be a staged return to onsite learning for all regional students in the first two weeks of Term Four.
The numbers for weddings and funerals will increase, and religious gatherings can happen outdoors with up to ten people.
Hospitality businesses will be able to serve patrons outdoors, with a cap of 50 seated patrons per venue, and an updated ‘two square metre’ density limit in place.
Indoors, venues can open with a cap of 10 seated customers per space – with up to two spaces per venue – and in line with the existing ‘four square metre’ density rule.
Tables must be spaced at least 1.5m apart, cleaned after every customer and the details of all patrons must be kept.
Beauty and personal care services will also be available with a face covering. Outdoor events like a play in the park or an open-air cinema can take place, in accordance with other restrictions.
Regional real estate agents will be able to hold auctions outdoors with up to ten people.
And travel can resume for regional Victorians holidaying anywhere in regional Victoria.
All businesses across Victoria – regional and in Melbourne – will also be required to have a COVIDSafe Plan, enforceable from 28 September.
For more details on the roadmap visit: vic.gov.au/coronavirus-covid-19-reopening-roadmap-regional-victoria.
Quotes attributable to Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney
“Today is testament to the determination of people in south west Victoria and across regional Victoria to not only get these numbers low – but to keep them low.”
“The hard work of Victorians is paying off and from 11:59pm tomorrow, regional Victoria can take the next step towards a COVID Normal – where life looks close to how we remember it.”