Daniel Andrews has been urged to jail or fine anybody who deliberately exposes other people to coronavirus.
The Victorian Premier is facing mounting pressure from the Opposition to be tougher on rule breakers as the state grapples with a second COVID-19 outbreak.
Victorians living in metropolitan Melbourne and the Mitchell Shire are currently in the midst of a second lockdown in an attempt to stem the spread of the virus.
Anybody caught breaking stay-at-home orders faces a fine of $1,652.
But Shadow Attorney-General Edward O’Donohue said more still needs to be done to serve as a legitimate deterrent to would-be wrongdoers, Herald Sun reported.
Metropolitan Melbourne and the Mitchell shire are in lockdown following the rise in COVID-19 cases through community transmissions. Shadow Attorney-General Edward O’Donohue saidt the government should be fining and jailing lockdown rule breakers
‘At a time when Victoria is again in lockdown because of Daniel Andrews’ incompetent mismanagement of the COVID-19 crisis, every step needs to be taken to protect the community,’ Mr O’Donohue said.
‘Daniel Andrews must now urgently act to introduce tough new penalties, including significant jail time and substantial fines. The risk flowing from this shocking behaviour demands nothing less.’
Deliberately spreading coronavirus or attempting to do so is already considered an offence in every state and territory within Australia.
But Mr O’Donohue argued penalties needed to be more severe and frequently imposed in Victoria, particularly given the current circumstances.
There have been past examples in Victoria of people attempting to spit on health workers or police or leaving their homes while waiting for the results of a COVID-19 test.
A man in his 70s has died and another 273 cases of coronavirus have been identified in Victoria overnight as the state is gripped by a second wave of the disease
Police walk dogs belonging to residents of the Alfred Street public housing tower which remains under tight lockdown in North Melbourne on July 11
He wants to send the strongest possible message that breaking isolation orders or deliberately attempting to spread the virus would not be tolerated.
‘Daniel Andrews negligently failed to introduce tough new penalties as part of the COVID-19 legislation, which was rushed through the parliament in April this year,’ Mr O’Donohue said.
‘He needs to put the protection of those who protect us, as well as the wider community first and send a very strong message that this dangerous and reckless behaviour is unacceptable and won’t be tolerated.’
The Victorian government is urging people to do the right thing to stem the spread of the virus.
The reimposed lockdown measures in parts of the state mean people can only leave their homes for four essential purposes – groceries, daily exercise, to give or receive care and to go to school or work.
Medical staff at a pop-up COVID-19 testing clinic, perform tests on drivers on July 11
On Sunday, Victoria recorded 273 new cases of COVID-19.
A man in his 70s also died after contracting the virus.
The additional death takes the national toll to 108 after a man in his 90s also died on Saturday.
Mr Andrews implored people to follow those orders, telling the public on Sunday it was currently a ‘very dangerous’ situation.
‘This is a dangerous time,’ he said.
At least 145 cases are linked to North Melbourne and Flemington public housing towers, while a further 22 are linked to a Carlton housing commission block.
But Chief Medical Officer Brett Sutton confirmed those numbers are finally beginning to slow down after 10 towers were placed in a total lockdown last week.
A medical worker is pictured performing a COVID-19 test as Melbourne re-enters stage three lockdown restrictions
A resident of the Pampas Street Public Housing complex in North Melbourne waves from the front door as the easing of lockdown restrictions is announced
Eight cases are linked to The Alfred hospital, though five of the staff who have been diagnosed are not believed to be linked. Initial testing suggests they acquired the virus in the community.
The three other coronavirus cases were picked up through contact tracing and immediately asked to self-isolate.
Further cases are linked to Box Hill Hospital and Brunswick Private Hospital, as well as a local abattoir. More details on clusters are expected by Sunday afternoon.
‘This is a very challenging time, and I know we are asking a lot of Victorians, but we simply have no choice but to acknowledge the reality that we face and to do what must be done, and that is to follow those rules, to only go out when you need to, and to only go out for the purposes that are lawful,’ Mr Andrews said.
The premier said police would be out in full force and would not be issuing warnings to people caught flouting the rules.
‘If we don’t follow the rules, if we don’t play our part, then we will simply see this virus continue to spread, and it will be a longer second wave, a more pronounced, a more tragic second wave than it ought be,’ he said.
‘Nobody wanted to be in this position, but this is where we find ourselves.’
Shoppers in Melbourne are pictured wearing facemasks as testing in the metropolitan are ramps up
MELBOURNE’S SECOND LOCKDOWN
AREAS BACK UNDER STAGE THREE RESTRICTIONS:
* Metropolitan Melbourne covering 30 Local Government Areas – Banyule, Hume, Moreland, Bayside, Kingston, Mornington Peninsula, Boroondara, Knox, Nillumbik, Manningham, Port Phillip, Cardinia, Maribyrnong, Stonnington, Casey, Maroondah, Whitehorse, Darebin, Melbourne, Whittlesea, Frankston, Melton, Wyndham, Glen Eira, Monash, Yarra, Greater Dandenong, Moonee Valley, Yarra Ranges, Hobsons Bay.
* Mitchell Shire which includes the towns of Broadford, Kilmore, Seymour, Tallarook, Pyalong and Wallan.
WHAT WILL CLOSE AGAIN:
* Community sport
* Indoor sports and recreation including arenas and stadiums
* Swimming pools, saunas and bathhouses
* Food courts
* Indoor and outdoor cinemas
* Casino and gaming
* Brothels and strip clubs
* Beauty and personal care services
* Holiday accommodation and camping
* Play centres and playgrounds
* Galleries, museums and zoos
VISTORS AND PUBLIC GATHERINGS:
* No visitors allowed in homes
* Public gatherings and exercise can only be with immediate household or two people
ALLOWED OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES:
* Fishing and boating
* Tennis, golf and surfing
OPEN FOR BUSINESS:
* Retail subject to density
* Markets for food and drink only
* Cafes, restaurants, pubs, clubs and bars return to takeaway only
* Return to remote auctions
* Inspections by appointment only
* Visits allowed
SECOND PLACE OF RESIDENCE:
* No visits outside the restricted areas – subject to conditions
* Can be completed by those already on holiday
* No new holiday travel from 11.59pm on July 8
* Ten people, plus those conducting the funeral
* Five people (couple, witnesses and celebrant)
* Broadcast only.