Not good: An increase to the number of positive COVID-19 tests has led authorities to increase and extend restrictions. Photo: FILE

Growing COVID-19 cases cause restrictions to be increased

June 20, 2020 BY

A SPIKE in the number of COVID-19 cases has caused State authorities to dial back the number of people allowed to visit family and friends, as well as delay other restriction reductions.

From Monday only five people will be allowed to visit a home, while outside gatherings will be limited to 10.

Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews. Photo: FILE

Premier Daniel Andrews said family gatherings were the main cause in the jump of reported COVID-19 cases.

The experts tell us that, largely, the numbers are being driven by families,” he said via statement. “Families having big get-togethers and not following the advice around distancing and hygiene. In fact, around half of our cases since the end of April have come from transmission inside someone’s home.

“You can see how this could happen. People feeling relaxed at home. Letting their guard down. Letting old habits creep back. But we are still in a pandemic – and people’s lives are still at risk.”

The growing number of positive cases of COVID-19 also means that an increase to patrons allowed in restaurants, cafes and other public spaces, that was set to rise to 50 on Monday, will now be delayed until 12 July.

“That means restaurants, pubs, auction halls, community halls, libraries, museums and places of worship will all stay at a maximum of 20 people in any one space until 12 July,” Premier Andrews said.

“Businesses that were set to open on Monday like gyms, cinemas, theatres and TABs can do so but again, only with a maximum of 20.”

Junior and non-contact sport, which is set to resume from Monday can still do so, and the ski season opening, scheduled for the same day will also still go ahead.

The work from home order will remain in place until at least 31 July.

Premier Andrews said this was not the outcome people were hoping for but the decision is being guided by health officials.

“Today, our case numbers have hit the highest they’ve been in more than two months. I know that’s not what people want to hear but sadly, that is our reality,” he said.

“I know this is not where we wanted to be. And that Victorians will feel disappointed and frustrated. I’m frustrated too. But we have to channel that frustration into action.

“We can’t let this thing get away from us. We must act while we can.”

The Premier also announced a $1500 finical support program for workers who test positive to COVID-19, and their families who may have been exposed by can’t access sick leave.

“This is about making sure there’s no financial reason for these people not to isolate and to go to work instead.”

Victoria recoded 25 new COVID-19 cases overnight.

Read Premier Andrews’ statement in full here.