Australians have been told no party is worth someone’s life, as draconian new measures to stop the spread of coronavirus are introduced.
‘There’s absolutely no need for anybody to be having a party. Parties should not be occurring,’ Victoria’s Premier Daniel Andrews told reporters on Wednesday morning.
‘People should be staying in their house and not going to anyone else’s house. There’s no need. Not is now the time to party.
‘If you can stay at home you must stay at home. It is very, very simple. You should not be having friends over for a dinner party.
‘You should not be going out shopping unless you need to. Shop for what you need when you need it.
Victoria’s Premier Daniel Andrews has warned Australians not to have parties, and said no gathering is worth someone’s life
It comes as Scott Morrison restricted social gatherings to ten people, put a blanket ban on overseas travel and ordered more workplaces to close in his latest measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus
There are now more than 2,200 confirmed coronavirus cases in Australia, including eight who have died. Globally at least 417,000 people have been infected
‘We cannot have people queueing for intensive care beds. That will mean they will die. We’ve got to buy time and part of that is everybody doing the right thing.’
It comes as Scott Morrison restricted social gatherings to ten people, put a ban on overseas travel and ordered more workplaces to close in his latest measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
The Prime Minister met with his ‘war cabinet’ in Canberra on Tuesday night to discuss further health and safety measures as national cases of COVID-19 soared past 2,300 and an eighth person died.
Beginning on Wednesday night, Australians will be banned from eating at shopping centre food courts, and the number of people at weddings, funerals and social gatherings will be limited to curb the spread of coronavirus.
NO HOUSE PARTIES OR LARGE INDOOR GATHERINGS:
Under new social distancing measures intended to curb the spread of COVID-19, Scott Morrison urged against hosting parties and intimate gatherings inside people’s homes.
The prime minister said the number of guests at people’s homes should be kept to a minimum, meaning large birthday celebrations and barbecues are prohibited.
‘These will be a significant sacrifice, I know. We’ve all been to those events as extended families and gatherings. And gathering together in that way, even around the large family table in the family home when all the siblings get together and bring the kids, these are not things we can do now,’ he told reporters on Tuesday.
‘All of these things present risks and they obviously present them to the elderly members of our families as well, who we need to protect.’
He said state authorities will consider putting measures in place that could potentially lead to penalties for those who organise such events.
‘This will be a significant sacrifice, I know,’ Mr Morrison told reporters following an emergency meeting of state and territory leaders.
The new rules come after registered and licensed clubs, entertainment venues, cinemas, casinos, nightclubs, indoor sports venues, including gyms, and places of worship were ordered to close as part of ‘stage one’ restrictions rolled out on Monday.
Takeaway services at restaurants, cafes and food courts will still be allowed to operate.
He also unveiled strict restrictions that would effectively ban large weddings by limiting the number of people in attendance to five – including the couple and the celebrant.
‘Large gatherings for weddings, sadly, won’t be possible under these new arrangements,’ he said.
‘Sadly, also, and I know this will be very difficult, funerals to no more than 10 persons observing the rules around the four-square-metre rule and the social distancing practices.
Mr Morrison announced there is now an outright ban on travelling internationally, with some exceptions such as aid workers and compassionate travel.
He said it is clear from the numbers of people still travelling that some are defying advice not to travel anywhere in the world.
The prime minister urged all Australians to stay refrain from leaving their homes unless ‘absolutely necessary’ – such as going out for groceries or medical needs.
Leaving the house for brief walks or exercise can continue as long as those activities are done in small groups.
Restaurants and cafes will only be allowed to provide takeaway services, the prime minister said
Under the tight new restrictions, weddings could go ahead only with five people present, after it emerged 37 people became sick with coronavirus at a wedding in Stanwell Tops, NSW (pictured) earlier this month
Those who could work from their home were advised to do so if possible.
‘You should only go outside your home to go to those essential things I talked about, not to go and congregate in groups. We need you to stop doing that. That is not going to help,’ Mr Morrison added.
‘Visits to your premises, to your house, to your residence, should be kept to a minimum and with very small numbers of guests.’
CORONAVIRUS CASES IN AUSTRALIA: 2,317
New South Wales: 1029
Western Australia: 175
South Australia: 170
Australian Capital Territory: 39
Northern Territory: 5
TOTAL CASES: 2,317
Galleries, museums, libraries, youth centres, community halls, clubs, RSLs and swimming pools also must close.
Social sports such as large groups of people playing soccer in a park have also banned, and boot camps and personal training will be restricted to a maximum of 10 people.
Yoga and barre sessions, as well as spinning and other exercise sessions, can continue so long as they abide by the 10 people or fewer rule as well.
‘You can see what we’re trying to do, limit the gathering of people in large numbers that can relate to the transmitting of the virus through the social interactions which are not considered necessary,’ Mr Morrison said.