Covid Restrictions Extended Amid Concerns Over Community Transmission

New Year celebrations cancelled


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With Covid at WA's doorstep, event organisers are anticipating losing millions after the state government announced that public health restrictions would be extended into the new year.

Keeping pandemic rules in place until at least January 4, Premier Mark McGowan said the state is not out of danger yet, following one positive case reported on Monday.

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"So far, we have limited the spread. And now we are in reach of possibly being able to kill off this outbreak," he declared.

"However, based on the number of close contacts associated with the recent outbreak who are still waiting on test results, and the concerning nature of the outbreak amongst the Perth backpacker community, we are not out of the woods just yet."

With concerns over Covid cases in the community amid low testing numbers, Mr McGowan announced at Monday's Covid conference that restrictions would be extended for Perth and Peel, while large music festivals and high-risk events would be cancelled.

The premier also declared that face masks would continue to be mandatory at indoor public venues, along with no dancing at public venues except for weddings, and seated service offered at licenced venues only, right through to 6am next Tuesday.

"This gives us the best chance to potentially eliminate this outbreak in our community and ensure we can continue to have a relatively normal and safe holiday period," he said.

With New Year’s celebrations set to look a little different this year, Mr McGowan urged people to commemorate the event in a safe way.

"But for most West Australians, we'll be able to safely bring in the new year with our friends and family. For some of the larger outdoor public events like community fireworks, we're continuing to recommend that people wear masks when they cannot physically distance."

Despite night club doors being closed and major music festivals cancelled on New Year's Eve, the Perth Cup at Ascot the following day will still go ahead.

Patrons attending the races on New Year's Day will be required to wear a face mask and show proof of a Covid vaccination.

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28 December 2021

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