Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced a three-step-plan to gradually reopen Australian society and ease lockdown restrictions. The timeline for the plan is to be determined by the states and territories according to local situations and based on health advice.
In stage one, COVID safe reopening will commence with physical distancing and hygiene measures in place. Up to five visitors will be allowed to homes; gatherings of up to 10 outside of home; work from home will still be encouraged if it is feasible for the business; libraries, community centres playgrounds and boot camps will be reopened.
Stage one will see Australians doing more shopping, visiting restaurants and cafes, home sales and auctions, children attending local playgrounds, outdoors boot camps and local travel.
Stage two will allow for most business’ reopening with physical distancing and hygiene measures implemented, including gyms, cinemas, galleries and beauty therapists. Some interstate travel may also be allowed in stage two although such decisions are up to the governments of each state and territory.
Stage three will allow all Australians to return to workplaces, gatherings of up to 100 people and cross-Tasman travel will be considered. Morrison said the three-stage-plan is not set in stone, and premiers and chief ministers can “cut and paste” from it in a way that is suitable to their locality.
The PM said that progress will be reviewed every three weeks. Easing restrictions will be gradual to ensure that Australia’s hard work is not wasted; “it’s like the emu and the kangaroo, they go forward, not backwards. And that’s how this has to work. Premiers and chief ministers are very keen to ensure that you continue to move forward.”