Daily Bulletin


News

  • Written by Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra
The Conversation

Scott Morrison has warned of a potentially rocky road as COVID restrictions are lifted to reopen the economy, saying the process must proceed even in the face of expected fresh outbreaks.

“This is a complex and very uncertain environment. But we cannot allow our fear of going backwards from stopping us from going forwards,” he said, unveiling a plan agreed by national cabinet, but to be implemented at different rates in different states and territories.

Morrison made it clear he would be opposed to reimposing restrictions once the unwinding was underway.

The aim is a “Covid-safe economy” in July. According to Treasury, 851,000 jobs would be restored in the months ahead.

The “road map” has three steps, laying down baselines for restarting activities.

In the first stage, rolled out any time from now, people can have up to five visitors to their house and gatherings of up to 10 will be allowed outside of the home.

Small restaurants and cafes can reopen, but only with up to 10 customers at a time.

Playgrounds can open, as well as libraries and community centres; outdoor bootcamps can restart and auctions will be permitted.

Local and regional travel for recreation will be allowed.

On the work front, the advice is “work from home if it works for you and your employer”, which Morrison described as “a difference in emphasis” compared with the stronger encouragement previously for people to work from home.

Under the relaxed rules, funerals can have up to 30 attendees outdoors and 20 indoors, and weddings 10 people in addition to the couple and the celebrant.

Step two will allow outside gatherings up to 20 people, and gatherings up to 20 in re-opened indoor gyms, beauty salons, cinemas, theatres and amusement parks, galleries and museums.

Cafes and restaurants will be able to seat up to 20 people at one time.

States and territories may allow larger numbers in some circumstances.

Some interstate recreational travel would be considered, depending on the jurisdiction.

The third stage sees gatherings up to 100 allowed and people returning to their workplaces. Food courts, cafes and restaurants will be able to operate with up to 100 people, as will saunas and bathhouses. All interstate travel will be permitted.

In this stage consideration will be given to opening bar areas. Strip clubs and brothels would remain closed.

There would be consideration in this stage of travel between Australia and New Zealand, Pacific Island travel and travel arrangements for international students.

Morrison said the pace of lifting restrictions “will totally be up to the states and territories. They’ll be responsible for setting their own timetable and communicating that to their citizens and residents in their own states and territories.”

He also said premiers and chief ministers “have asked me to stress there should be no expectation of step one starting on day one, unless they are indeed already there”.

Moving on these steps would take some preparation, he said.

Movement from one step to the next would depend on three criteria - that the medical evidence suggested further easing wouldn’t be an undue risk, widespread testing was identifying community transmission, and public health actions were able to trace cases and trap local outbreaks.

“Testing, tracing, trapping, as they were saying in the Northern Territory recently,” Morrison said.

National cabinet will review progress every three weeks.

Asked whether, when expected fresh outbreaks came, states, territories and Australians needed to hold their nerve and not snap back to tighter restrictions, Morrison replied without hesitation, “yes”.

But he also made it clear if there was a widespread outbreak the government would take the health advice.

Morrison said Australia’s health system and testing and tracing arrangements put it in a good position.

In this plan to lift restrictions, “we walk before we run. We know we need to be careful to preserve our gains”.

But “if we wish to reclaim the ground we lost, we cannot be too timid. There will be risks. There will be challenges. There will be outbreaks, there will be more cases, there will be setbacks,” he said.

“Not everything will go to plan. There will be inconsistencies. States will and must move at their own pace, and will cut and paste out of this plan to suit their local circumstances. There will undoubtedly be some human error. No-one is perfect. Everyone is doing their best.”

Victorian premier Daniel Andrews, who has been the most conservative of the premiers, said he would not make announcements until next week.

He also hinted he might open schools - which in Victoria are providing distance learning to all but a few students - earlier than the current arrangement. Victoria has angered the federal government with its hard line on schools. The national health advice has been that schools can be safely open and Morrison has pushed that issue.

NSW also will not act before next week, with premier Gladys Berejiklian noting the state had already moved to lift some restrictions.

The state breakdown of the Treasury forecast for the jobs restored in coming months is: NSW 280,000, Victoria 216,000, Queensland 174,000, South Australia 55,000, Western Australia 85,000, Tasmania 18,000, Northern Territory 9000, ACT 14,000.

Authors: Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra

Read more https://theconversation.com/australia-starts-to-re-open-but-the-premiers-have-the-whip-hand-on-timing-138218

Writers Wanted

The Best Android tools and Utility Apps

arrow_forward

How to Find the Best SEO Services Company That Offers Guaranteed Results

arrow_forward

The Conversation
INTERWEBS DIGITAL AGENCY

Politics

Prime Minister Interview with Ben Fordham, 2GB

BEN FORDHAM: Scott Morrison, good morning to you.    PRIME MINISTER: Good morning, Ben. How are you?    FORDHAM: Good. How many days have you got to go?   PRIME MINISTER: I've got another we...

Scott Morrison - avatar Scott Morrison

Prime Minister Interview with Kieran Gilbert, Sky News

KIERAN GILBERT: Kieran Gilbert here with you and the Prime Minister joins me. Prime Minister, thanks so much for your time.  PRIME MINISTER: G'day Kieran.  GILBERT: An assumption a vaccine is ...

Daily Bulletin - avatar Daily Bulletin

Did BLM Really Change the US Police Work?

The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement has proven that the power of the state rests in the hands of the people it governs. Following the death of 46-year-old black American George Floyd in a case of ...

a Guest Writer - avatar a Guest Writer

Business News

How to Find the Best SEO Services Company That Offers Guaranteed Results

As a business owner, you have to be strategic about how you’ll be able to reach your target market. That is why entrepreneurs implement various marketing tactics to reach their goals. With today...

News Co - avatar News Co

Top Reasons Why Your Business Needs SEO

SEO is crucial for the ranking of a website. You may think that SEO offers greater searchability while it can do more than this. The most cost-effective tool for the survival of smalls businesse...

News Co - avatar News Co

Nisbets’ Collab with The Lobby is Showing the Sexy Side of Hospitality Supply

Hospitality supply services might not immediately make you think ‘sexy’. But when a barkeep in a moodily lit bar holds up the perfectly formed juniper gin balloon or catches the light in the edg...

The Atticism - avatar The Atticism



News Co Media Group

Content & Technology Connecting Global Audiences

More Information - Less Opinion