Victorian Premier, Daniel Andrews has today announced that Victoria’s State of Emergency will be extended for a further four weeks as the state works to bring it’s coronavirus outbreak under control.
“We know how challenging it is to live with Stage 4 restrictions and it’s easy to feel frustrated or get complacent – especially as the weather improves – but right now it is critical that all Victorians follow the directions to drive this virus down and keep each other safe,” the Premier said.
“This is far from over and our best weapon against the spread of this deadly virus is limiting movement.”
In Melbourne, that means following Stage 4 restrictions and not leaving your house during the curfew hours of 8pm to 5am, unless it is for work, medical care or caregiving.
The Premier said only permitted workers would be able to attend their work premises.
“We have made the decisions necessary to slow the spread of coronavirus in regional Victoria, including the introduction of Stage 3 restrictions across all regional local government areas from 11.59pm, Wednesday 5 August,” Mr Andrews said.
“Today we have seen 15 new cases in regional Victoria and while we are still seeing new cases in the regions, it is critical that these numbers don’t continue to increase – as we know, all it takes is one positive case to set the virus off again in any of our regional communities.”
“If you have even the mildest of symptoms, please get tested and stay home. People without access to sick leave or other supports can apply for the $450 payment to help you get through while waiting for their test result.
“No matter where you live, if you have a legitimate reason for leaving home you must wear a mask, physically distance from other people and practice good hygiene, such as handwashing.”
The State of Emergency will now be extended to 11.59pm on Sunday, 13 September.
Mr Andrews said the extension would allow the Victorian Government to continue enforcing physical distancing and isolation requirements as well as other directions from the Chief Health Officer (CHO).
He said Victoria Police had strong powers to enforce these directions and could issue on-the-spot fines for breaches of stay at home directions.
“This includes up to $1,652 for individuals and up to $9,913 for businesses. Under the directions, people who don’t comply could also be taken to court and receive a fine of up to $20,000. Companies face fines of up to $100,000.”
”We will beat this virus – and extending the State of Emergency ensures we have all the tools we need for the fight,” the Premier said.
”I thank every Victorian who is part of our massive team keeping our community safe – you can thank them too by following the rules, which will see us all get through the pandemic.”