COVID-19 restrictions have been ushered back in across Victoria and South Australia.
The entire state of Victoria has commenced a five-day lockdown, with hospitality venues reverting back to takeaway and delivery for the fifth time.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the lockdown is the best chance the state has for life to get back on track as soon as possible.
“We’ve seen this strain before … Victoria will not wait to act,” said Premier Andrews. “We know that not much good comes from waiting.
“If we act now – while we’re right on the heels of this outbreak – we can give ourselves every chance of getting ahead of it.”
Victorians will have to wear masks in all indoor and outdoor settings, and there is also a 5km radius in place.
The lockdown is slated to end at 11:59pm on Tuesday 20 July.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg confirmed financial support measures for workers, similar to those introduced in New South Wales earlier in the week, will also be available for Victorian businesses.
Weekly payments for Victorians will fall under under a cost-sharing agreement between the Commonwealth government and the Victorian government.
Affected Victorian workers can apply for support through Services Australia, with payments made seven days after the first day of lockdown. There is no liquid assets test.
Workers who have lost more than 20 hours of work per week will receive a weekly $600 payment, with those losing between eight and 20 hours per week receiving $375.
The Victorian government is expected to announce “significant” financial support for businesses shortly.
In South Australia, masks are now mandatory in high-risk settings.
Hospitality venues will operate at 50 per cent capacity.
“We don’t want lockdowns in South Australia, so we are taking some pre-emptive action to make sure we can keep our state safe and our economy strong,” says South Australia Premier Steven Marshall.
The Premier also encouraged South Australians to make sure they use QR codes to check in to any venue.
Image credit: Time Out