Thursday, June 24, 2021

Victorian govt eases restrictions, some businesses to return to limited Covid-safe operations

The Victorian Government on Sunday announced easing of Covid restrictions. According to a media release, the Victorian govt thanked the Federal Government for supporting Victorian households and businesses with around $31 billion of initiatives including JobKeeper, cash flow support, payment of the COVID Supplement, pandemic disaster leave and substantial wage subsidies to hire and keep on apprentices.

Whilst the Premier’s announcement of the Victorian Government’s decisions will enable some businesses to return to a limited COVIDSafe operation, many will remain closed.

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Victoria’s three-day rolling average is now below two cases per day. Maintaining this result will make a strong case for the retail and hospitality sectors to reopen before the next review date in November. This should remain under active consideration, the govt release said.

Every day Victoria remains under restrictions to get the second wave in Victoria under control comes at a heavy cost.

Throughout the lockdown more than 1000 jobs have been lost, on average, every day. There has also been a 31 per cent increase in mental health services being accessed under Medicare for the same four-week period up to 11 October in Victoria compared with last year, whilst it has been only an eight per cent increase in NSW and seven per cent nationally.

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The govt has asked Victorians to move safely and quickly towards the NSW model of strong contact tracing and a COVIDSafe but predominately open economy.

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