On Sunday, state leaders and the Prime Minister met to determine the next stage in lockdown rules for Australia to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Last night, things changed again, with further bans announced across the country.
The new rules come into effect from 12am on Tuesday 31 March in Queensland, here's what will be changing and what you need to know.
We'll keep this updated as anything changes.
Should You Stay Home?
Advice from the Prime Minister is that unless necessary, you should be staying at home and avoiding contact with others except for shopping for essentials, healthcare needs and exercising outdoors.
Indoor and outdoor meetings have been limited to a maximum of two people, with a few exceptions:
- People who live in the same household going out together
- Attending a funeral (maximum of 10 people)
- Attending a wedding (maximum of five people)
The government has also urged people to stay home, and only leave their home if they:
- Are shopping for essentials, such as food and sanitary items
- Require medical or healthcare needs
- Have compassionate care duties
- Are exercising outdoors (while keeping a safe distance from others, and only with one other person or people of the same household)
- Are working or studying and unable to do so from home
Police have the power to issue on-the-spot fines, which vary in amount by state and territory, to anyone found to be disobeying these rules. In Queensland on the spot fines are $1334 for individuals and $6672 for businesses.
What Will Be Closed?
As of 12am on Tuesday 31 March, the following businesses must close:
- Indoor places of worship
- Gyms and yoga studios
- Indoor sporting venues
- Waxing and beauty salons
- Nail salons
- Spas and massage parlours (health-related services are exempt)
- Amusement parks and arcades
- Indoor and outdoor play centres
- Swimming pools
- Large outdoor sporting activities are banned
- Skate parks
- Outdoor gyms
What Will Still Be Open?
Businesses that are declared as "essential services" will remain open, they include the following:
- Restaurants and cafes, in a takeaway only capacity
- Shopping centres
- Retail stores
- Hotels (accommodation only)
- Petrol stations
- Convenience stores
- Freight and logistics businesses
- Food delivery services
- Bottle shops
- Hairdressers and barbers
- Food markets
- Outdoor personal training (one-on-one only)
How Long Will The Lockdown Last?
In a press conference on Sunday night, the Prime Minister declared that Australians must expect these restrictions to remain in place for six months.
"The more we share the sacrifice, the more we do the right thing together as Australians, the more lives we will save, the more livelihoods we will be able to preserve and the stronger we will all be on the other side."
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Image credit: Urban List