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Victoria – COVID Restrictions Update

Published January 05, 2021 (last updated January 18, 2021) Author: Employsure

Latest COVID-19 updates

As of Monday 18 January, face mask restrictions have been eased, and the maximum capacity of workplaces has been increased to 50%.

Face Mask Requirements

Face masks must be worn when in indoor spaces, on public transport and in commercial passenger vehicles. This includes places such as:

  • shopping centres, sand indoor markets
  • large retail stores over 2000 sqm
  • airports and on flights
  • when working in or visiting hospitals and aged care facilities 

Exemptions

A face mask is not required in some circumstances including for:

  • Infants and children under the age of 12 years.
  • A person who is affected by a relevant medical condition, including problems with their breathing, a serious condition of the face, a disability or a mental health condition.
  • Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication.
  • Persons for whom wearing a face mask would create a risk to that person’s health and safety related to their work, as determined through OH&S guidelines.
  • Persons whose professions require clear enunciation or visibility of their mouth. This includes teaching or live broadcasting.
  • When directed to remove the face mask to ascertain identity.
  • A person who is a student while onsite at a primary school or outside school hours care.
  • Persons being married while in the process of being married. 
  • Professional sportspeople when training or competing. 
  • Persons are engaged in any strenuous physical exercise
  • During emergencies

Rules For Businesses

All businesses must have a COVIDSafe plan for onsite operations and comply with any additional industry obligations that apply to your business. These additional obligations can be found here.

There are some general requirements businesses must follow:

  • ensure physical distancing (1.5 metres)
  • wear a face mask
  • practise good hygiene
  • keep good records and act quickly if staff become unwell
  • avoid interactions in close spaces
  • create workforce bubbles

Businesses can have up to 50% capacity for their workplaces. Offices with fewer than 40 staff can have 20 staff on-site subject to density quotients.

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Note from Employsure

The above is a general guide to the restrictions in Victoria. For official and detailed information, please visit the Victorian Government’s Covid website. If you need further information on how these restrictions impact your workplace as an employer, please get in touch with our advice line or, if you are not a client, we can assist you with free, initial advice on 1300 207 182.

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