Link to DHHS Victoria

 Update June 30, 2020

 From 11:59 pm 1st July, the following 10 postcodes will go into local lockdown:

 Postcode            Suburbs

3012                   Brooklyn, Kingsville, Maidstone, Tottenham, West Footscray
3021                   Albanvale, Kealba, Kings Park, St Albans
3032                   Ascot Vale, Highpoint City, Maribyrnong, Travancore
3038                  Keilor Downs, Keilor Lodge, Taylors Lakes, Watergardens
3042                  Airport West, Keilor Park, Niddrie
3046                  Glenroy, Hadfield, Oak Park
3047                  Broadmeadows, Dallas , Jacana
3055                  Brunswick south, Brunswick west, Moonee vale, Moreland West
3060                  Fawkner
3064                  Craigieburn, Donnybrook, Mickleham, Roxburgh Park, Kalkallo

 These “hot zones” will be required to return to Stage 3 Stay at Home restrictions – until at least 29 July.  If you live in these locations, there will again only be four reasons to be out: 

  • Shopping for food and supplies
  • care and caregiving
  • exercise
  • and study or work – if you can’t do it from home

 Restrictions related to local lockdown of the “hotspot areas”   

 (please note restrictions as mentioned in June 20 Update below apply to areas outside hotspots) 

  • Religious ceremonies and private worship can only occur online. Churches are allowed the acceptable minimum number of volunteers to live stream from church buildings. Volunteers will be considered under essential services.
  • Restrictions on the number of people who can attend weddings and funerals 
  • Weddings in a restricted postcode will be restricted to 5 people (the couple, two witnesses and the celebrant). You can travel to a wedding outside an impacted area.
  • Funerals held in a restricted postcode will be restricted to 10 people plus those required to conduct the funeral. You can travel to a funeral outside a hotspot. 
  • From 11:59 pm on 1 July, if you live in a restricted postcode you cannot visit friends and family who live at another household or have visitors to your home. The exception to this is if you are providing caregiving or visiting for compassionate reasons, providing a service or for work purposes.

  Statement from the Premier 

 Update  June 20, 2020 @ 7 PM (Revised June 24)

 Victorian coronavirus restrictions tightening as cases continue to increase

 The Victorian Premier has announced a number of changes that brings more restrictions due to Covid19 cases continuing to increase. These changes will be in effect from 11:59 PM on June 21, 2020. For more information click the statement from the Premier’s media centre.

 Summary: 

  • Places of worship can open for private worship or small religious ceremonies for up to 20 people in each separate area. 
    Definitions:
    Indoor space means an area, room or premises that is or are substantially enclosed by a roof and walls, regardless of whether the roof or walls or any part of them are open or closed; 
    Indoor zone means a section of an indoor space that:
    (a) is of at least 200 square metres in area; and
    (b) is designated by the person who owns, controls or operates the indoor space as being for the exclusive use of specified members of the public; and
    (c) is delineated by landmarks or visible markings
    All the above should be practiced with the 4 square metre requirement and 1.5 metre social distancing. Moreover, these restrictions are in effect until July 12, 2020
    Sources: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/documents/202006/Restricted%20Activity%20Directions%20No%2010%20signed.pdf  (Look at page 25 ) 
  • From 22 June the number of visitors that you can have to your home will reduce to five and outdoor gatherings will reduce to a maximum group of ten.
  • Church pastors and leadership teams to amend Safety management plan for reopening churches to reflect new changes.

 

 Update June 17, 2020 More of Easing Restrictions

 The Victorian Government has announced the gradual easing of restrictions from 11:59pm on Sunday 21 June 2020. Religion and Ceremonies Q & A DHHS

 From 11:59pm on 21 June, places of worship can open for private worship or small religious ceremonies for up to 50 people in each separate space. Groups can be no larger than 20 people and be divided into separate areas.

 Business Victoria and DHHS have clarified the statement to mean the following:

  • If you have a building that has completely separate areas (see notes re separate areas below) – you can have 50 in each area- BUT within those separate areas you have to split into groups no larger than 20. Over this, the social distancing (1.5m social distancing and 4sqm rule) apply.
  • So, the area has to be big enough to accommodate 50 people with 4sqm rule – PLUS allow groups of 20 to be separated from each other
  • You also need to consider what you can control – social distancing, sanitising, hygiene requirements, cleaning afterwards, contact tracing etc

 What constitutes a “separate area”?

 See Arts and Culture Guidelines for COVID-19

 Each separate area must be separated by permanent structures or be a discrete area of the premises that is sufficiently separated from any other area of the premises. Walls separating areas should either reach from floor to ceiling or be at least 2.1 metres high for the space to be considered sufficiently separate. Temporary structures should not be installed to create separate areas. Each separate enclosed area must not have a density of patrons greater than one per four square metres, and any more than 20* patrons at any one time. 

  • Multiple services or ceremonies can be held on the same day, but cleaning needs to occur between services or ceremonies. Enough time should be allowed between services or ceremonies to reduce the risk of crowds at entrances and exits and to enable cleaning.
  • Essential public/ community support services allowed – food banks, help for the homeless or other essential community activities including leasing church halls or other spaces for community support groups. Physical distancing requirements are the responsibility of the group or organisation leasing the space.
  • Prayer groups held at a place of worship or another public place, up to 20 people can attend. A prayer group held in someone’s home can meet as long as there are no more than 20 people, including the normal residents of the household.
  • Weddings can have up to 20 people in attendance, in addition to the couple and the celebrant.
  • Up to 50 people can attend a funeral service in addition to the personal leading the funeral and other funeral staff.
  • display a sign at each public entry to any single undivided indoor space that says what the maximum capacity is based on the 4 square metres rule. You may have different signs for different room
  • For more information and guidelines, refer to COVID-19 Safety management plan for reopening of church buildings. Management plan is sent to church pastors and leadership teams.

 SAFETY MANAGEMENT PLAN FOR REOPENING CHURCHES

 

 Update  May 24, 2020 Stage Two of Easing Restrictions

 The Premier of Victoria has today announced the Step 2 easing of restrictions.

 Along with easing of groups to 20 people at home or outdoors, from 11:59pm on 31 May, restrictions on gatherings at places of worship and ceremonies will be eased: 

  • Places of worship can open for private worship or small religious ceremonies for up to 20 people in a single undivided indoor space, subject to the four-square metre rule plus the minimum number of people reasonably required to perform the service or ceremony.
  • 20 people in addition to the celebrant and couple being married can attend a wedding. If a wedding is held in a home, a maximum of 20 people is allowed, including the celebrant and the couple.
  • 50 people can attend a funeral in addition to the officiant and funeral staff, subject to the four-square metre rule. If a funeral is held in a home, a maximum of 20 people can be present (including the officiant and funeral staff).

 Resources:

 Coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions Victoria

 Religion and Ceremony DHHS 

 

 Update May 2020 

 Gradual Easing of Restrictions

 Premier Daniel Andrews has announced the first stage of restrictions easing.  At this stage, as of 11:59pm Tuesday 12th May: 

  1. Indoor Gatherings – Allow up to 5 visitors at home in addition to the normal residents of a household. This includes the outside and inside of a premise – so the total number at a residence is 5 additional people. This will be an additional reason that people can leave their home – this will be to visit family and friends in group no more than 5 people.
  2. Outdoor Gatherings – Allow public gatherings of 10. Groups of no more than 10 people can gather for exercise and outdoor activities  – Includes household members and other people but a max of 10.  A person cannot organise or knowingly attend an outdoor gathering of more than 10 people.
  3. Private worship or small religious ceremonies will be permitted with up to 10 people, plus those required to perform the ceremony. Please note – an additional requirement of religious ceremonies is to keep records of contact details of each guest, to assist in contact tracing if required.
  4. Funerals – Allow 20 mourners indoors (people required to conduct the funeral are allowed in addition).  If held at a private residence, only 5 people max allowed. Please note – an additional requirement of religious ceremonies is to keep records of contact details of each guest, to assist in contact tracing if required.
  5. Weddings – Allow 10 guests in addition to the couple and the celebrant. Please note – an additional requirement of religious ceremonies is to keep records of contact details of each guest, to assist in contact tracing if required.
  6. Community facilities (e.g. – Youth Groups., community centres, foodbanks etc)  Allow 10 people for a support group plus the minimum number of people reasonably required to operate the facility or groups – Density quotient applies – does not include the use for Sport.  Please note – operators must keep of contact details of each person attending the group to assist in contact tracing if required. 

Further clarification is provided here in the Restricted Activity Directions from the Deputy Chief Health Officer

  AS RESTRICTIONS EASE, PLEASE REVIEW HYGIENE AND OTHER MEASURES YOU WILL TAKE IN THE EVENT OF MEMBERS TESTING POSITIVE.  RESOURCES BELOW MAY BE OF ASSISTANCE

 Click here to see 10 ways to reduce your risk of Coronavirus