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Regional NSW restrictions in place, essential workers to be tested for Covid-19

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced a new Public Health Order for essential workers in Fairfield and greater Sydney. Photo: file.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced a new Public Health Order for essential workers in Fairfield and greater Sydney. Photo: file.

Residents are reminded to not be complacent when it comes to current Covid-19 restrictions in regional NSW.



While regional NSW has avoided a lockdown, greater Sydney has faced strict 'stay at home' orders and a 10 km travel ban.

Face masks in regional NSW are compulsory in all indoor venues, and as of July 12, it is compulsory to check-in with a QR code at any business or workplace.

Fines of $200 apply for those not wearing a mask and $1000 for those breaking current restrictions.

Students in regional NSW are expected to attend school and masks to be worn indoors by Year 7 students and above, as well as all staff, is highly recommended.

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Restrictions on certain activities and non-essential visitors apply to schools outside of Greater Sydney and can be found here.

Students in greater Sydney, Wollongong, Shellharbour, Blue Mountains and Central coast will be required to wear masks.

Residents are also reminded to continue practicing social distancing from one another and to continue to sanitise and wash their hands to stop the spread of germs.

The following restrictions apply to regional areas.

  • Visitors to households will be limited to five guests - including children;
  • Masks will be compulsory in all indoor non-residential settings, including workplaces, and at organised outdoor events;
  • Drinking while standing at indoor venues will not be allowed;
  • Singing by audiences at indoor shows or by congregants at indoor places of worship will not be allowed;
  • Dancing will not be allowed at indoor hospitality venues or nightclubs;
  • Dancing will be allowed at weddings, but only for the wedding party (no more than 20 people);
  • Dance and gym classes limited to 20 per class (masks must be worn);
  • The one person per four square metre rule will be re-introduced for all indoor and outdoor settings, including weddings and funerals;
  • Outdoor seated events will be limited to 50 per cent seated capacity
  • There is no limit on the number of people that may attend the funeral or memorial service if no one from Greater Sydney or who is subject to the stay at home rules is present.
  • If anyone subject to the stay at home rules attends the funeral or memorial service, there must not be more than 10 people present, excluding the person conducting the service and any other person necessary for the conduct and preparation of the service.

A full explanation of restrictions in regional NSW can be found here.

Currently, essential workers may travel through the regions however NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced new measures for workers, following a recent covid positive case in Goulburn.

Anyone who leaves the Fairfield Local Government Area for essential work must get tested for Covid-19 every three days, while people from Greater Sydney must undergo weekly tests if their workplace is 50 km or more outside of Greater Sydney as of July 14.

More information on the latest Public Health Order can be found here.

Ms Berejiklian said this would "reduce the instance of essential workers passing on the virus".

NSW chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant said people were permitted to go into the regions for essential work.

Dr Chant emphasised that these workers were not permitted to go to pubs, clubs or hospitality venues in regional areas.

"The same restrictions that apply in Greater Sydney apply to essential workers in the regions," Dr Chant said.

A spokesperson from NSW Health previously told the Southern Highland News that essential work was defined as reasonable work that can't be done from home, such as tradespeople and retail assistants and must wear a mask.

Residents from regional NSW will be exempt from the stay at home orders if they travel to Greater Sydney for a Covid-19 vaccination.

NSW Minister for Health Brad Hazzard signed an exemption for residents who enter Greater Sydney for the sole purpose of receiving a Covid-19 vaccination on June 30.

The exemption orders read:

"An exempt person, being a person who enters Greater Sydney for the sole purpose of receiving a COVID-19 vaccination and their carer, from the stay at home requirements provided that:

  • The exempt person travels to, and returns from, Greater Sydney by a private vehicle (not public transport), with no other persons other than another exempt person.
  • The exempt person travels to, and returns from, Greater Sydney by the most practicable direct route.
  • The exempt person does not stay overnight in Greater Sydney
  • The exempt person leaves Greater Sydney as soon as reasonably possible after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.
  • The exempt person takes all reasonably practicable steps to not enter any premises in Greater Sydney other than the place where the exempt person, or another exempt person, is receiving the COVID-19 vaccine."

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This story Masks, QR codes and covid-19 tests for essential workers compulsory: Changes in regional NSW restrictions first appeared on The Maitland Mercury.