STAY AT HOME: Sydney goes into semi-lockdown as COVID-19 infections mount

- June 25, 2021 2 MIN READ
Existing COVID-19 restrictions across Greater Sydney will be extended until midnight, next Friday, July 2, and the city will go into a quasi-lockdown as another 22 new locally acquired infections have emerged.

Contact tracers have been able to link all but one of the cases to known cases or clusters. NSW Health is currently treating 56 cases. The total active cases stands at 70.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian is introducing stay at home orders for anyone who lives or works in the four local government areas (LGAs): Waverley, Woollahra, Randwick and the City of Sydney.

That means that if you work in the city, but live north of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, outside the hot zone, you are also expected to stay at home.

“If you are someone who essentially works in those four local government areas – you are subject to the stay at home orders. That includes me. I don’t live in those areas, but work in those areas. So I will have to stay at home from today,” Berejiklian said.

Under the lockdown plan, there are four reasons to leave your home:

  • Shopping for food or other essential goods and services;
  • Medical care or compassionate needs;
  • Exercise outdoors in groups of 10 or fewer;
  • Essential work, or education, where you cannot work or study from home.

Businesses across the four local government areas will need to close unless they provide essential services such as grocery or food (takeaway) sales.

“Our aim is to be proportionate,” the Premier said.

“And yes, it will have an impact on businesses. Obviously, businesses like a gym – any indoor gyms won’t be open.”

Berejiklian said that in this outbreak, there have been “too many examples of workers coming in from other areas, getting infected in the workplace but then passing on the infection to multiple clients”.

There are growing concerns about what are known as “seeding events”, most notably workplace transmission at the Joh Bailey hair salon in Double Bay, where 900 clients passed through over a 10-day period while the staff were infectious.

“I’m urging all clients and staff of Joh Bailey between June 15 and 23 to be tested and maintain quarantine as directed by NSW Health,” she said.

As announced earlier this week people who live or work in the City of Sydney, Waverley, Randwick, Canada Bay, Inner West, Bayside, and Woollahra LGAs, cannot travel outside metropolitan Sydney for non-essential reasons.

That means all school holiday adventures are cancelled for those people

The premier said that residents across greater Sydney should also limit unnecessary activity and avoid large gatherings in coming days and comply with the current restrictions.

Police enforcement ramps up

NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Gary Worboys said officers would be out in force to make sure people abide by restrictions.

“It is really important that people understand that our traffic and highway patrol are also engaged in an operation,” he said.

“They’re well aware of the public health orders to make sure that, especially leading into the holiday time, that people don’t travel when they should not travel. It doesn’t mean that there will be road blocks. I want to make that really clear.

“But as police go about their normal duties, they will be stopping cars and they will be asking and people will produce licences and where there’s a need to take action, police will.”

  • Additional reporting by Cec Busby

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