Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Covid-19 restrictions tighten across Greater Sydney

Given the growing number of infectious cases in the community and unlinked cases of community transmission, Covid-19 restrictions will be tightened across Greater Sydney including the Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour.

From 5pm today (Friday, 9 July) the following additional restrictions will be in place:

  • Outdoor public gatherings limited to two people (excluding members of the same household).
  • People must stay in their local government area or within 10kms of home for exercise and outdoor recreation, with no carpooling between non-household members.
  • Browsing in shops is prohibited, plus only one person per household, per day may leave the home for shopping.
  • Funerals limited to 10 people in total (this will take effect from Sunday, 11 July).

The four reasons to leave your home remain in place:

  • Shopping for food or other essential goods and services (one person only).
  • Medical care or compassionate needs (only one visitor can enter another residence to fulfil carers’ responsibilities or provide care or assistance, or for compassionate reasons).
  • Exercise with no more than two (unless members of the same household).
  • Essential work, or education, where you cannot work or study from home.

ARA responds

The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is encouraging consumers in Greater Sydney to shop with purpose and pursue available options online.

ARA CEO Paul Zahra says retail remains open for the goods and services people need. He, however, notes that consumers should be mindful of the new restrictions that are in place.

“We appreciate there’s a fair bit of confusion around the NSW government’s health advice on essential shopping, given there has been no directive on stores having to close,” says Mr Zahra.

“The facts are that retail can still open and people can go to stores for the goods and services they need. But if you do need to go to the shops, get in and get out without delay – this is not a time for browsing or socialising.

“Most retailers have a digital option, so if there are things you would normally buy in stores, consider click and collect, shop online and check out the delivery options that are available. Every dollar you spend keeps someone in a job – it doesn’t matter if that purchase is made in a store or over the internet.

“Retailers have worked incredibly hard and spared no expense to ensure their stores are Covid-safe, often going above and beyond safety requirements. Consumers can shop in stores with confidence knowing their health and safety is paramount.

“There’s no doubt this is a devastating time for retailers in Greater Sydney, and for small businesses in particular. The cost of this lockdown is growing by the day, and sadly many will not survive.

“This once again highlights how important Australia’s vaccination program is to our future prosperity. It’s our ticket to freedom, and retailers stand ready to support take up rates in any way it can.”

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