Greater Freedoms On Their Way For Melbournians

Significant steps

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NCA NewsWire:Ian Currie

The countdown is on for Melbournians with only four sleeps to go until further restrictions are eased, as the state edges towards 80 per cent vaccination targets. 

As many were enjoying the first weekend out and about, with hospitality venues open, Premier Dan Andrews on Sunday announced the next significant step in the state's 'vaccinated economy' roadmap to freedom.

Stay up-to-date on the latest news with The Melbourne Briefing - keeping you in the loop with breaking news as it hits.

Gearing up for a 'Covid normal', the Premier said that the eased restrictions coming at the end of the week, will bring regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne into line with each other.

Andrews highlighted that Victoria's "vaccinated economy", which includes jab mandates for both workers and patrons will apply to most venues across the state.

"We were not going to lock the place down to protect people who had not protected themselves," Premier Daniel Andrews said.

"We have now reached the time where everyone can be vaccinated."

One of the most significant changes is the scrapping of patron caps at venues, instead a density quota of one person per four square metres will be implemented across most indoor settings, with most outdoor venues, required to apply a one person per 2sqm rule.

From 6pm on Friday 29 October, the changes will include:

  • Travel between Melbourne and regional Victoria will be allowed
  • Early childhood education and care will reopen
  • All school students will return to face-to-face learning full-time
  • On-site adult education reopens for those who are fully vaccinated
  • Majority of indoor venues, including restaurants, cafes, pubs, gyms, and hairdressers will open with no caps subject to a one person per four sqm limit to fully vaccinated patrons. Staff must also be double-dosed.
  • Most outdoor settings will be subject to one person per two sqm limit (up to 500 people), to staff and patrons who are fully vaccinated.
  • 30 people will be allowed to attend weddings, funerals, and religious gatherings if vaccination status is unknown.
  • Live entertainment venues will reopen.
  • Indoor cinemas and theatres, will be capped at 75 per cent or up to 1000 people, and for non-seated indoor entertainment venues there will be a one person per four sqm limit.
  • Outdoor seated and non-seated entertainment venues including stadiums, zoos and tourism attractions will be open with a limit of 5000 people where staff and patrons are fully vaccinated.
  • Music festivals and other events can open with up to 5000 attendees
  • Masks will remain mandatory indoors but no longer required outdoors.

Mr Andrews also stipulated that the "vaccine economy" will remain in place for 2022.

"We've made the vaccinated economy not only broader, but we've also indicated – we've been very clear about the fact – that it's not changing any time soon, and it's going to be here for 2022," the Premier said. 

Victoria is expected to hit 90 per cent vaccination targets by the end of November, when greater freedoms and ‘fundamental changes’ will be introduced.


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Hit News Team

24 October 2021

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