7 October 2021

NSW Premier signals restriction changes as state hits 70 per cent vaccination mark

| Kim Treasure
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NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet

NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet. Photo: Twitter.

The new-look NSW Government has announced a raft of changes to the roadmap out of COVID-19 restrictions after the state hit the first vaccination milestone of 70 per cent earlier than expected.

NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet confirmed the state has surpassed the 70 per cent mark for double vaccinations, and said 80 per cent is still expected in late October.

Mr Perrottet has brought forward the return of some grades to school, resulting in all children being allowed to return to classrooms by 25 October, and doubled the number of fully vaccinated people allowed at household gatherings, weddings and funerals from what was initially enforced.

From Monday, 11 October, home visits will have a cap of 10, not including children aged under 10. Outdoor gatherings can comprise up to 30 vaccinated people, while weddings and funerals will be capped at 100 vaccinated guests, an upgrade from the previous figure of 50.

Under the new plan, children in kindergarten, years 1, 2 and 12 will return to school on Monday, 18 October, and then all remaining grades will go back to school on Monday, 25 October.

Recognising the difficulty some regional people have had in accessing vaccines, workers in hospitality, gyms and retail stores in regional NSW will be able to return to work after receiving just one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine next week. They will need to be fully vaccinated by Monday, 1 November.

READ ALSO Region’s MPs welcome Dominic Perrottet as 46th Premier of NSW

Masks will be mandatory in offices, but only until 80 per cent double vaccination is reached – a target expected to be hit later this month.

At that stage of restrictions, people will be able to have 20 people in their home, gather outside in groups of 50, and nightclubs will also reopen, but with no dancing or drinking while standing up.

Mr Perrottet said the change to nightclubs will allow them to operate as bars before restrictions are further eased on Wednesday, 1 December.

NSW recorded 587 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases today.

In the Southern NSW Local Health District (SNSWLHD) there were 15 new COVID-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8 o’clock last night.

Of the 15 cases:

  • Nine new cases are in the Queanbeyan Palerang region. All are linked to known cases. Five are in Karabar, one is in Crestwood, two are in Queanbeyan and one is in Googong.
  • Four new cases are in the Goulburn Mulwaree region. All are under investigation.
  • Two new cases are in the Snowy Monaro region. Both are linked to known cases. One case is in Cooma and one is in Thredbo.

A full list of exposure sites is available here.

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Bev Mortensen12:41 pm 07 Oct 21

I live near Kempsey where residents use services in the Hunter Region. for example I am waiting to drive to outer northern Newcastle to collect shower screens for my new home, I find it difficult to obtain information about when this type of activity will be allowed.

I am double vaccinated (AZ) but aged over 70 so relaxation of restrictions may still be putting me at risk and I believe all aged or infirm Australians face an ongoing % risk of fatal Covid illness. Federal initiatives to protect the aged focused on residential care and there was no priority given to the larger group of aged frail and disabled people receiving home care and their support workers. As an older person I feel abandoned to my fate by the push for return to business as usual. I also strongly reject reduction in taxes in favor of increases in services, particularly health and hospital services where we are yet to see the full impact of chronic post-Covid disease – ‘long Covid’, circulatory, respiratory and inflammatory conditions. As a pensioner I do not have private health cover to help me jump the queue. I contributed to our universal ‘insurance’, Medicare, when working but Medicare cannot help me when public hospitals have no capacity. Kempsey only has two storey buildings to leap from if in future I can’t manage to wait in pain for a hip or knee replacement so that option might only add to hospital costs with severe injury but not death unless I dive head first!

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