Back to lockdown: Geelong and the Bellarine now in Stage 3 coronavirus restrictions

August 7, 2020 BY

Under the Stage 3 restrictions, the City of Greater Geelong has closed its cultural venues, such as the National Wool Museum.

GEELONG and the Bellarine have returned to tighter coronavirus restrictions, with Stage 3 in effect across Victoria as of today (Thursday, August 6).
The full reintroduction of the Stage 3 lockdown is the latest in a series of tightened restrictions in Geelong and the Bellarine in recent days, including no visitors being allowed in the home in the six G21 municipalities and the mandatory wearing of face coverings outside the home (which now applies to all Victorians).
It follows Premier Daniel Andrews’ declaration on Sunday of a state of disaster in Victoria.
Like the earlier Stage 3 restrictions, people must stay at home except for the four accepted reasons (shopping for food and supplies, care and caregiving, exercise, and study and work if can’t be done from home).
Mr Andrews said he was reintroducing Stage 3 in regional Victoria “with some regret” but had no choice “given the significant community transmission and the growing case numbers, and the fact we need to stay ahead of this in
regional Victoria”.
Businesses that must close include restaurants and cafes (unless they can offer takeaway or home delivery services), beauty and personal services, and entertainment and cultural venues. Community sport is no longer allowed.
The City of Greater Geelong council has closed many of its facilities, and has given permanent and casual employees up to 14 days special COVID-19 pay while it seeks to redeploy them into other areas.
“We are not surprised the Premier has taken this course of action, given the rise in cases across the G21 region and the high numbers still being seen daily in Melbourne,” Geelong mayor Stephanie Asher said.
“We all face another very challenging period, but our community is resilient, and we will make it through by looking after ourselves and each other.”
All Victorian schools moved to flexible and remote learning as of yesterday (Wednesday, August 5).
Education Minister James Merlino said nothing had changed for Year 12 students in term four, including VCE exams and getting results, certificates and ATARs (Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank) before the end of the year. “I can assure students and parents you will receive your certificate and receive your results, you will receive your ATAR. So there is no change to any VCE exam. The only thing that will change is the General Achievement Test, which will move from September to early term four.”
The new rules – which will run for six weeks – are even tighter in metropolitan Melbourne, which now has a curfew between 8pm and 5am and has closed all non-essential businesses under Stage 4 restrictions. The state of disaster is in addition to the state of emergency that already exists and will grant police additional powers.
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