- From midnight tonight, Victorians will be able to head to the shops, pubs, cafes and restaurants with only limited restrictions
- The Andrews Government has announced it will drop the curfews on people leaving their homes, after four months of lockdown
- Families and friends will also be given more leeway to visit each other, while pools and gyms will be able to resume operations from next week
- The decision to finally ease lockdown restrictions will bring much-needed relief to many businesses, with hundreds of thousands of people left without work
- It’s estimated the second wave of COVID-19 infections, and wider lockdowns, have cost the Australian economy up to $12 billion
From midnight tonight, Victorians will be able to head to the shops, pubs, cafes and restaurants near their home with little to no restrictions.
Melbourne has finally ended its strict stage-four lockdown measures after recording two consecutive days of no new coronavirus infections.
Premier Daniel Andrews announced the easing of restriction yesterday afternoon, after temporarily delaying his highly-anticipated announcement.
The news of the reopening brings much-needed relief to many businesses, as hundreds of thousands of people have been left without work due to the lockdown.
“The government has clearly listened to the pleas from business,” Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Paul Guerra told AAP.
“Although there are some restrictions on hospitality, it’s only a short wait until those limits will be increased,” he added.
In total, the cost of the second wave of COVID-19 infections in Melbourne is estimated to have cost the Australian economy up to $12 billion.
The reopening announcement celebrations weren’t limited to just business though, with many Victorians also taking to social media to celebrate the news.
As soon as Melbourne residents got the green light from their leader, #getonthebeers began trending across Twitter.
The phrase began gaining popularity back in March, when Victorians were warned not to go out during the pandemic and “get on the beers”.
Even the Premier admitted he would celebrate the end of this latest, long-lasting lockdown with a beverage or two.
Said I’d go a little higher up the shelf. Here’s to you, Victoria. pic.twitter.com/JbsbmUxmoZ— Dan Andrews (@DanielAndrewsMP) October 26, 2020
Among the big changes announced by the Andrews Government yesterday was news that retail and hospitality businesses wold reopen from midnight tonight.
Cafes, pubs and restaurants will all be allowed a maximum of 50 people outside and 20 people indoors.
Meanwhile, from next week, those restrictions for hospitality businesses will be pushed to 70 people outdoors and 40 people indoors.
Additionally, the 25-kilometre travel limit will be dropped, as will the restrictions on travel and sporting facilities.
In a bid to stop COVID-19 from flaring up again, Premier Andrews has advised that wearing masks will still be enforced at this stage.