Working During Covid-19 Restrictions
COVID UPDATE 23 SEPTEMBER 2021
Regional stay-at-home orders
Restrictions have been lifted in the following LGAs:
From 11:59pm, Thursday 23 September
- Glen Innes
From 12:01am Saturday 25 September
These LGAs will continue to operate under some restrictions to ensure community safety.
Stay-at-home orders introduced
Stay-at-home orders for the Byron, Kempsey, and Tweed LGAs are in place from 5pm 21 September for 7 days. These stay-at-home orders also apply to anyone who has been in an affected LGA since the following dates:
- Kempsey LGA - 14 September
- Byron LGA - 18 September
- Tweed LGA - 18 September
Everyone in the affected LGAs must stay at home unless it is for an essential reason, which includes shopping for food, medical care, getting vaccinated, compassionate needs, exercise and work or tertiary education if you can't work or study at home.
People who are fully vaccinated can attend an outdoor gathering of up to five people for exercise or outdoor recreation, as long as all of those aged 16 or older are fully vaccinated.
Stay-at-home orders have been extended for Hilltops LGA until 1 October 2021.
LGAs of Concern
As vaccination rates continue to rise in Sydney’s West and South-West, the Minister for Health and Medical Research has signed an amendment removing some restrictions in local government areas of concern.
From 20 September the following restrictions have eased for those who live in LGAs of concern:
- No limit on the duration of outdoor recreation
- Outdoor public gatherings of up to five people are allowed if everyone participating in the gathering over 16 years of age is fully vaccinated. Children aged 12 years of age and under can also participate in addition to the five fully vaccinated persons.
- Shopping, exercise and outdoor recreation can be done within your LGA or 5kms from home into another LGA (previously only 5km from home)
- Attend a small wedding (maximum 11 people) in Greater Sydney as a guest (previously only allowed to attend as a guest within the LGA)
- A person’s single’s bubble buddy can live in Greater Sydney (previously must have resided within 5km of a person’s home). A person from an LGA of concern can also now be a buddy for someone in Greater Sydney. Singles bubble buddies are no longer required to be registered with Service NSW.
While the reasons for leaving home and gathering limits in LGAs of concern are now aligned with stay at home areas, important additional restrictions remain, especially relating to work. Authorised worker, vaccination and travel permit requirements are all still in place in relation to the LGAs of concern.
From 12.01am Monday 27 September outdoor public pools in stay at home areas and areas of concern will open.
The Minister for Health and Medical Research has signed an amendment removing the following LGAs from the regional NSW stay-at-home area from 1pm, 16 September:
- Bega Valley
- Snowy Monaro Regional
- Upper Hunter Shire.
These areas will continue to operate under general restrictions to ensure community safety.
A more detailed outline of the rules that apply in these LGAs can be found here.
Reopening NSW roadmap
Restrictions for adults who have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be lifted from the Monday after NSW passes the 70 percent double vaccination target. This will be subject to further fine-tuning and Health advice if circumstances change drastically or if cases within a designated area remain too high.
Only fully vaccinated people and those with medical exemptions will have access to the freedoms allowed under the Reopening NSW roadmap. Non-vaccinated people under the age of 16 will be able to access all outdoor settings and will be able to access indoor settings if they accompanied by adult members of their household.
The changes include:
- Up to five visitors will be allowed in a home where all adults are vaccinated. Children 12 and under are not counted when applying the 5-person limit.
- Up to 20 people can gather in outdoor settings.
Venues including hospitality, retail stores and gyms:
- Hospitality venues can reopen subject to one person per 4sqm inside and one person per 2sqm outside, with standing while drinking permitted outside
- Retail stores can reopen under the one person per 4sqm rule (unvaccinated people will continue to only be able to access critical retail)
- Personal services such as hairdressers and nail salons can open with one person per 4sqm, capped at five clients per premises
- Gyms and indoor recreation facilities can open under the one person per 4sqm rule and can offer classes for up to 20 people
- Sporting facilities including swimming pools can reopen.
Stadiums, theatres and major outdoor recreation facilities:
· Outdoor major recreation facilities including stadiums, racecourses, theme parks and zoos can reopen with one person per 4sqm, capped at 5,000 people
- Up to 500 people can attend ticketed and seated outdoor events
- Indoor entertainment facilities and education and information facilities including cinemas, theatres, music halls, museums and galleries can reopen with one person per 4sqm or 75 percent fixed seated capacity.
Weddings, funerals and places of worship:
- Up to 50 guests can attend weddings, with dancing permitted and eating and drinking only while seated
- Up to 50 guests can attend funerals, with eating and drinking while seated
- Churches and places of worship to open subject to one person per 4sqm rule, with no singing.
- Domestic travel, including trips to regional NSW, will be permitted
- Caravan parks and camping grounds can open
- Carpooling will be permitted.
- Masks will remain mandatory for all indoor public venues, including public transport, front-of-house hospitality, retail and business premises, on planes and at airports
- Only hospitality staff will be required to wear a mask when outdoors
- Children aged 12 and under will not need to wear a mask indoors. Employers must continue to allow employees to work from home if the employee is able to do so.
There will be revised guidance on isolation for close and casual contacts who are fully vaccinated, with details to be provided closer to the reopening date.
To minimise movement and protect the community from the evolving COVID situation in Sydney, the current lockdown in Greater Sydney is in place until Thursday 30 September 2021, and introduce new rules targeting the local government areas of concern, where the vast majority of new cases are emerging.
From Saturday 28 August 2021:
- Authorised workers from the LGAs of concern are required to carry a permit from Service NSW declaring that they are an authorised worker and cannot work from home.
- Anyone entering an LGA of concern for the purposes of work must carry a worker permit issued by Service NSW.
- Permits can be applied for through this link https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/rules/travel-registration
Mandatory mask wearing for Greater Sydney
From 12.01am Monday 23 August, residents in Greater Sydney must wear a mask when outside your home, except when exercising.
All restrictions for Greater Sydney can be found here: https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/rules/greater-sydney
Permits required for travel to Regional NSW
From 12.01am Saturday 21 August 2021, if you live in Greater Sydney (no longer including Shellharbour and the Central Coast) and wish to travel to Regional NSW, you will need to register via Service NSW https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/register-travel-regional-nsw
Registration for these permits is available online https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/rules/travel-registration
From 12.01am, Monday, 13 September
For those who live outside the LGAs of concern, outdoor gatherings of up to five people (including children, all adults must be vaccinated) will be allowed in a person’s LGA or within 5km of home.
For those who live in the LGAs of concern households with all adults vaccinated will be able to gather outdoors for recreation (including picnics) within the existing rules (for one hour only, outside curfew hours and within 5km of home). This is in addition to the one hour allowed for exercise.
Special powers will also be given to the NSW Police Force including:
- Power for the Commissioner of Police to lockdown apartment blocks while NSW Health assesses the COVID risk
- Power for the Commissioner of Police to declare a residential premises a COVID-risk premises and require all people to present to police during compliance checks
- Powers to allow police to direct a person who has been issued with an infringement notice to return to their place of residence
- If a person from outside an LGA of concern is found to be in an LGA of concern without a reasonable excuse, they will be fined $1,000 and required to isolate at home for 14 days.
What does this mean for the screen production sector (including postproduction)?
Currently, as long as you are working within the Public Health Orders and taking all the COVID-safe measures you can, advice from NSW Health is that screen production may continue. However, we ask that schedules are reviewed and anything that can be postponed while the stay at home Order is in place, is postponed.
Where production must continue, it should continue with the utmost caution and use only essential personnel. Please limit the numbers of people allowed on set or on-site, and ensure everyone is wearing masks, indoors or outdoors when not on camera, and implement stringent COVID-plans. Please monitor everyone daily, and anyone with even the mildest symptoms should not attend work, but should be immediately tested.
At this time, staff who are residents of Bayside, Blacktown, Burwood, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield, Georges River, Liverpool, Parramatta, Strathfield, and some suburbs of Penrith are not permitted to leave these LGAs for work.
Every production must have and be able to produce a COVID-Safe Plan. The Australian Screen Production Industry COVID-Safe Guidelines can be viewed here: https://www.screenaustralia.gov.au/covid-19-support
Every production working on location should also advise the local Police Area Command that they are working in their area to avoid confusion or concern from local community members and possible shut down.
We ask that you continue to implement your bespoke stringent COVID-Safe plans to best ensure the safety of the cast, crew and the wider NSW community.
For regular updates and advice:
- COVID-19 | NSW Government
- NSW case locations
- COVID-19 Support Package
- NSW schools: COVID-19 advice for families
- Health advice regarding vaccinations.
Service NSW and support for businesses and individuals
- Information about setting up mandatory check-in with QR Code https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/covid-safe/customer-record-keeping/mandatory-electronic-check-in
- Service NSW has support for businesses affected by COVID-19 https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/campaign/covid-19-help-businesses
- Services Australia has support for individuals who have lost income due to COVID-19 https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/covid-19-disaster-payment/who-can-get-it/nsw-eligibility-rules/greater-sydney
If you are not booked in for a COVID-19 vaccine, please book an appointment as soon possible https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/health-and-wellbeing/covid-19-vaccination-nsw/get-your-covid-19-vaccination-nsw
Download your COVID-19 digital certificate via the Express Plus Medicare mobile app https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/medicare/express-plus-medicare-mobile-app
or your Medicare online account through myGov https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/medicare/medicare-online-accounts
- You can add your COVID-19 digital certificate to your Apple Wallet or Google Pay.
- Instructions are available on the Services Australia website https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/subjects/getting-help-during-coronavirus-covid-19/covid-19-vaccinations/how-get-proof-your-covid-19-vaccinations
- If you can’t get proof online, your vaccination provider can print your immunisation history statement for you.
- Call the Australian Immunisation Register on 1800 653 809 (Monday to Friday 8am to 5pm) and ask for your statement to be sent to you. It can take up to 14 days to arrive in the post.
- If you are not eligible for Medicare, you can call the Australian Immunisation Register and request your certificate be mailed to you or add your COVID-19 certificate to your digital wallet using the Individual Healthcare Identifiers service (IHI service) through myGov https://my.gov.au/LoginServices/main/login?execution=e1s1
Authorised workers from local government areas (LGAs) of concern who are not yet vaccinated will have until Thursday 9 September to book their vaccination and will be required to carry evidence of their booking if they wish to leave their LGA for work.
If an authorised worker is not vaccinated or does not have a medical contraindication form, they will not be able to work outside their LGA after Sunday 19 September 2021. Workers from the LGAs of concern are offered priority bookings for vaccination.
Please use the following links for priority bookings:
- Authorised workers who live in LGAs of concern
- Anyone aged 16-39 who live in LGAs of concern
- Childcare, disability, and food workers who live or work in LGAs of concern