National Cabinet to reduce international arrivals by half, quarantine program under review
The Prime Minister announced in a press conference this afternoon that there would be a reduction in the number of returning citizens and residents over the next few weeks.There are no travellers returning to Victoria due to the COVID-19 spike, but various ports in other states will only receive 4,000 residents per week, down from the 8,000 currently received.
The Prime Minister said the National Cabinet decided the hotel quarantine program should move towards charging returning Australians for the two weeks of hotel accommodation as they isolate. It will be incumbent for states and territories to make their announcements. Where possible, the government will seek national uniformity across pricings.
Lastly, Mr Morrison announced there would be a national review of Australia’s hotel quarantine program, undertaken by the former Health Secretary Jay Holton. The review will work with states and territories to ensure procedures are working efficiently and the Government can have greater confidence in the quarantine arrangements put in place.
Victorians advised to wear masks
Victorians have been asked to wear masks while out in public, in a bid to reduce the risk of transmission if they are in a situation where they can’t follow social distancing rules.The advice from the Victorian Chief Health Minister, supported by the AHPPC, requests Victorians to wear masks when they are out of their home, relating principally to metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire.
Mr Andrews said even a homemade mask will help reduce the risk of transmission, and advised 2 million reusable masks and 1 million single-use masks had been ordered for distribution throughout the state at a later date.
“When you are out of your home for one of those four permitted reasons and when you can’t maintain that 1.5m social distance, so whether you are in an Uber or a taxi or if you are on public transport, many other examples, or even for the shopping on the basics you need when you need them, even a homemade mask or another mask, double come to that in a moment, it is our request of you,” he said.
“It’s not compulsory, we are simply asking that if you can wear a mask where you can’t distance, that is exactly what we would like you to do.”
$534 million Business Support Package for Victorian SME’s
The Victorian Government has launched a new $534 million Business Support Package, providing more support to help businesses and workers through to the other side of the coronavirus pandemic.
The new package includes:
Businesses will also benefit from an extended and expanded payroll tax deferral. Eligible businesses with payrolls up to $10 million can defer their liabilities for the first half of the 2020/21 financial year.
Please provide this information to your member networks.
Further details on how to apply will be provided over the coming days.