Victorians Now Only Need to Wear Face Masks in Certain Situations
It's still mandatory to carry one with you — but you'll only have to pop one on in specific circumstances, such as public transport and indoor shopping.
Over the past eight months, Melburnians have become accustomed to wearing face masks, with donning the coverings made compulsory back in mid-July and also again in mid-February. Now that Victoria's latest round of COVID-19 restrictions are continuing to ease, rules around covering your face are changing again as well. In big news, they're no longer mandatory in all indoor circumstances since 11.59pm on Friday, February 26.
At present, since the change kicked in overnight, you only have to don a mask at all in certain scenarios. You will always have to carry one with you, though — that's still mandatory. If this sounds familiar, that's because Victoria is reverting to the tules that were in place before Christmas.
Premier Daniel Andrews made the announcement about masks as part of his latest press conference, where he unveiled a whole heap of other changes — and easing back face mask requirements was one of the big ones. You'll now just have to wear them in specified crowded spots, including when social distancing can't be maintained.
First and foremost, Victorians will still be required to keep wearing masks indoors at shopping centres, and in retail stores inside shopping centres — including department stores, electronics stores, furniture stores, hardware stores and supermarkets. You'll also need to keep wearing them at indoor markets. The rule applies to spaces 2000-square-metres or larger, so if you're shopping indoors at a large and busy establishment, you'll need to mask up.
Masks are also still mandatory on public transport, and when using ride shares or other commercial passenger vehicles. That's hardly a surprise, given that social distancing is difficult in these situations.
And, you'll need to mask up when visiting a hospital, visiting or working in an aged care facility, and if you're either experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms or you've had a test and you're waiting for the results.
If you're still wondering where to grab a mask, we've put together a rundown of local companies making and selling them.
For more information about the status of COVID-19 and the current restrictions, head over to the Department of Health and Human Services website.
Published on February 27, 2021 by Sarah Ward