Scott Morrison has been criticised over his decision to put harsh restrictions on weddings and funerals while keeping schools and shopping centres open.
Weddings will be limited to just five people, while only 10 mourners can attend a funeral from midnight Wednesday under the PM’s new policy.
However, Westfield shopping centres will continue to trade and fitness fanatics will still be able to go to boot camps as long as their class doesn’t exceed 10 people.
Hairdressers will also stay open but clients can only spend half an hour in the salon, limiting the services a stylist can provide.
Australians have described the changes as ‘contradictory’ and have slammed Mr Morrison for sending ‘mixed messages’.
Hairdressers will also stay open but clients can only spend half an hour in the salon, limiting the services a stylist can provide
The infection rate in Australia has soared to 2,317 – including eight people who have died. The number is predicted to rise
‘Can Scott Morrison just f**king resign already?’ one person wrote on Twitter.
In spite of all the new restrictions, Mr Morrison has insisted it is still safe for children to go to school.
It comes as a two-month-old baby and a seven year old were diagnosed with deadly coronavirus on Wednesday.
Parents are increasingly opting to keep their kids home regardless the official advice and some ministers are even distancing themselves from the message.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews brought forward school holidays by four days to shut down schools in his state this week, while NSW leader Gladys Berejiklian said schools would remain open for now – but urged parents to keep their kids home.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he was placing the temporary restrictions on weddings because they’d found ‘some of the major transmitting events’ have been the social gatherings. Pictured: A wedding from March 6. More than 30 guests were later diagnosed with coronavirus
Mr Morrison said businesses involved in personal services ‘where there is a lot of contact’ such as nail salons (pictured) will no longer be able to operate
While some Australians understand schools are remaining open to offer essential workers – like those in our healthcare system – some flexibility while they’re at their jobs – others wish the government could make the advice clearer.
One Twitter thread, which has been shared and liked hundreds of times in a matter of minutes, pleaded with Mr Morrison to ‘borrow a line’ from UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
‘Schools are closed except for skeleton staff who will teach children of essential workers like healthcare workers. That wasn’t so hard was it? One sentence,’ the woman wrote.
The prime minister has been mocked for seemingly contradicting himself within his own speech.
At one point, he announced the decision to close all beauticians, nail salons and lash technician studios was due to the close proximity between them and their clients.
But others argue if that was the case, hair salons should also be closed.
Westfield shopping centres will remain open for business – but food courts inside the malls will be closed
PM’S ‘CONTRADICTORY’ ADVICE
– Go outside for anything unnecessary
– Eat in a shopping centre food court
– Travel overseas
– Go to a beautician because they have to work closely with clients
– Have more than 10 people at a funeral
– All students are safe to continue going to school
– Shop in a shopping centre
– Travel overseas for aid work
– Go to a hair salon – but only for a maximum of 30 minutes
– ‘Exercise common sense’ when inviting guests over to your home
Similarly, the decision to allow customers in a hair salon for 30 minutes – which is incredibly limiting to most colourists who take anywhere between two and four hours on a service – has been deemed confusing.
‘A hairdresser can continue working but a beauty therapist can’t due to close contact? You’ve confused the whole nation,’ one person said.
Dr Sanjaya Senanayake, an infectious diseases expert from the Australian National University, told the Today Show on Wednesday morning he didn’t quite understand the difference between a wedding and an outdoor workout.
Outdoor training sessions are allowed to continue – as long as there are no more than 10 people and instructors observe social distancing policies.
‘It seems fairly arbitrary, the numbers. But I think the principles are still the same. You want to observe good social distancing at those events,’ he said.
Food courts inside shopping centres will be closed for dine in customers – but will be able to offer takeaway options
‘Obviously the less people you have, that’s more achievable. The interesting thing about boot camps and sports are the distancing measures we use are not for people who are running around and spitting and breathing heavily, so I think at least 1.5m if not more between people.’
Cricket legend Shane Warne said he was ‘listening to the PM like everyone in Australia last night’ and was baffled by then we rules.
‘What I understood was, ”It’s essential, unless it’s not. Then it’s essentially not essential. I can’t be clearer”. Plus people can buy a new shirt at a shopping centre? WTF? PM just had a shocker. Surely should be in lockdown now,’ he tweeted.
Sportsman-turned-radio host Ryan Fitzgerald was similarly unimpressed.
‘I’ve got my hairdressers funeral at an amusement park tomorrow. Is it essential that I go after I drop the kids off at school?,’ he tweeted.
Under the new restrictions, no more than 10 people can attend a funeral, while a wedding is limited to the couple, celebrant and witnesses.