NSW Will Scrap Density Limits, Plus Masks and Check-Ins in Most Settings, by Mid-December
When the state hits 95-percent double jabs, or Wednesday, December 15 rolls around — whichever comes first — a heap of COVID-19 rules will ease even further.
When you're in lockdown, a couple of months is a long time in a pandemic. When cities and states are opening back up, the opposite proves true. That's the situation in New South Wales, which is about to lift a heap of its current COVID-19 restrictions — just two months after coming out of this year's lengthy stretch of stay-at-home rules.
NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet has announced that the state has updated its reopening roadmap, loosening the conditions that'll be in place once NSW hits the 95-percent double-dose vaccination target — or on Wednesday, December 15, whichever one comes first. At that point, all density limits will be removed, and masks and check-ins won't be required in most settings. Also, NSW's Public Health Orders will no longer require proof of vaccination for most activities.
— Dom Perrottet (@Dom_Perrottet) November 25, 2021
Firstly, those venue caps: they'll drop from the current one person per two-square-metres rule, and that'll be the case at all venues.
Regarding masks, you'll only need to wear them on public transport, on planes and at airports, and if you're working front-of-house in hospitality in an indoor space and you're not double-vaccinated. Otherwise, they'll just be strongly recommended in places where you can't social distance.
Although you've probably become accustomed to whipping out your phone to check in everywhere you go, you'll now only have to do so at select places — such as hairdressers, beauty salons and other personal services providers; pubs, small bars, registered clubs and nightclubs in the hospitality sector; and gyms. It'll also apply at indoor music festivals with more than 1000 people. And, it'll still cover hospitals, and aged and disability care facilities, unsurprisingly, plus places of worship, funerals and memorial services.
Also, the rules allowing only double-jabbed NSW residents in certain venues will ease, too — other than at indoor music festivals with more than 1000 people. That said, businesses can keep implementing their own conditions and require proof of vaccination before allowing people to enter.
COVID safety plans will also only be optional for businesses moving forward, and the rest of the previously announced rules for the 95-percent double-jabbed mark will still kick in as planned — so there'll be no limits on gatherings at home or in public, regardless of vax status; the same will apply at gyms and recreation facilities; and non-critical retail will be open to all.
"The easing of these restrictions will allow people to get out and enjoy summer, providing a boost for some of our hardest industries as we do everything we can to ensure we keep people safe as we learn to live with COVID," said the Premier.
Perrottet's announcement comes as NSW reached 92-percent double-dose coverage among folks over the age of 16.
Top image: Trent Van der Jagt.
Published on November 26, 2021 by Sarah Ward