Victoria’s ‘COVID Normal’ summer closer to reality

Victorian Premier, Daniel Andrews, has announced a raft of further changes that enable Victorian residents to edge closer to a ‘COVID Normal’ summer. 

Mr Andrews notes that changes he has outlined are “testament to the character and conviction” shown by all Victoria’s to protect the state’s collective public health – “a precious but fragile thing we have all built.” 

Following 23 days of zero transmissions and deaths, the Premier outlined the following changes: 

From midnight, Sunday, November 22

  • 15 visitors in home, per day (includes dependents, not babies under one year of age).
  • Accommodation providers – same rules as in-home gatherings – guests able to be away in groups of up to 15 pax (from the same or different families). 
  • Outdoor gatherings – maximum of 50 pax. 
  • Masks – will be required inside, in all settings but are not required outside. If you can’t distance, you must wear a mask. Common sense drives this – carry the mask, even when outside and be ready to use it, if you can’t effectively socially distance. 
  • Hospitality 100 pax permitted inside (1 per 4 square metres). Smaller venues will be able to welcome a maximum of 50 pax (calculated based on 1 per 2 square metres). 200 pax permitted outside (1 person per 2 square metres).
  • Indoors:
    Venues less than 200sqm of floor space are subject to the density quotient of one patron per two square metres, up to a total of 50 patrons. QR codes must be used for venues using the small indoor venue density quotient. No group size limit. Venues 200sqm of floor space or larger subject to the density quotient of one patron per four square metres up to 150 patrons. No group size limit. 
  • Outdoors:
    Up to 300 patrons per venue outdoors, subject to density quotient of one patron per two square metres.
  • Total venue capacity cannot exceed 300 patrons, including both indoor and outdoor spaces
  • Gyms – 150 pax maximum, in groups of 20 pax (1 per 4 square metres) 
  • Pools – Indoor pool cap – 150. Outdoor pool cap – 300 people subject to density requirements. 
  • Outdoor sport – up to 500 in groups of 50 pax.  
  • Large sporting facilities – can operate at 25 per cent capacity. 
  • Religious gatherings – 150 indoors outdoors 300 outdoors – density 1 per 4 square metres. 
  • Weddings and funerals – 150 pax maximum. Only 15 pax, if these events are being held in the home.  
  • Cinemas – 150 pax per space. 
  • Large public galleries (like the National Gallery of Victoria) – can operate at 25 per cent of capacity. 
  • Drive In cinemas – no caps. 

From Monday 30 November:

A “slow steady and safe return to work” will commence for Melbourne office workers.  

  • 25 per cent of staff will be able to be in office – 75 per cent must still work from home. Density requirements of 1 per 4 square metres, with heightened cleaning protocols and COVID Safe plans in place. 

This figure will be slowly built up, but the Premier is uncertain “when the next jump will be.” 

Public sector employees will continue to work from home. Private sector employees will return to the office first. 

The Premier is uncertain if we will ever get back to 100 per cent of employees being back on the office. 

The Premier also foreshadowed he plans to make further announcements regarding a ‘COVID Normal summer’ on Sunday6 December. However, in advance of this announcement, he also outlined the following change would occur from 11.59pm on Sunday 13th December:  

  • 30 visitors to the home, across the course of the day (dependents are counted, not babies under one) 

Related Statement from the Premier  

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