Sydney lockdown rules explained: What you can and can’t do…

Four Sydney council areas will go into lockdown late on Friday night as a coronavirus outbreak in the city keeps growing.

People who live in Woollahra, Waverley, Randwick and the City of Sydney, or who usually work in those local government areas, will have to follow the new tough restrictions starting 11.59pm on Friday and ending exactly a week later.

The people affected will only be allowed to leave home for four reasons:

  • Shopping for food and other essential things
  • Getting medical care or going out for compassionate needs
  • Exercising outdoors in groups no larger than 10 people
  • Essential work or studies that cannot be performed at home

“We understand this is a difficult time for everyone, however we need to take these steps now to get on top of this outbreak,” Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Health Minister Brad Hazzard said in a statement.

I don’t live in the four affected local government areas, but I do work there. Am I affected?

Ms Berejiklian said on Friday that if you have been working in the four affected local government areas either part time or permanently in the past two weeks you are subject to the stay-at-home order.

“So it doesn’t matter where you live. If you’ve worked in those four local government areas, you’re subject to that as well. That includes me,” she said.

“I don’t live in the four local government areas but I work in the CBD on most days, therefore, I am subject to the restrictions. I can’t leave my home, and that starts today.”

I recently visited one of those areas, do I have to stay at home?

People who have visited the four areas, but who don’t usually work there, will not be affected by the rules, a NSW Health spokesman said.

That means people who, for example, have gone to the CBD for dinner or a meeting in the past two weeks will not be included among those who have to lock down.

Do my partner, kids or housemates have to lock down?

No. People who are household contacts of someone who works in the four affected areas will be exempt from the rules, the spokesman said.

Can I visit the four affected areas?

If you don’t live there, you may only visit for “essential purposes” such as work, education or medical care.

A nurse conducts a COVID-19 swab test at the Rushcutters Bay mobile Covid testing clinic. (Photo by Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)

A nurse conducts a COVID-19 swab test at the Rushcutters Bay mobile Covid testing clinic. (Photo by Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images

I don’t live with my partner, can I visit them?

Chief health officer Kerry Chant said there will be some allowances made for visits to intimate partners.

“We always have some components which are around intimate partner visits, and that will extend in this circumstance,” she said. “But we are actually asking the community to work with us.”

Can I go out to get my Covid-19 vaccination?

Going out to get vaccinated will be considered essential and allowed as well.

I’m a Sydney resident who is not affected by the stay-at-home orders. Has anything changed for me?

Ms Berejiklian said restrictions in place for the greater Sydney community would be extended at least until midnight next Friday.

Those rules include a ban on travelling outside metropolitan Sydney for people who live in the City of Sydney, Waverley, Randwick, Canada Bay, Inner West, Bayside and Woollahra local government areas.

“Residents across greater Sydney should also limit unnecessary activity and avoid large gatherings in coming days and comply with the current restrictions,” the statement said.

The restrictions that were previously in place for greater Sydney, the Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour include:

  • Maximum of 5 guests, including children, allowed in households
  • Mandatory mask wearing in all indoor spaces outside of peoples’ homes, including workplaces and organised outdoor events
  • No standing and drinking at indoor venues
  • No singing by audiences or congregants indoors
  • No dancing at indoor venues or clubs, but for bridal parties under 21 people, dancing is OK
  • No more than 20 people in dance or gym classes, and all participants have to wear masks
  • No more than one person per four square metres allowed in indoor and outdoor settings, including funerals and weddings
  • No more than 50 per cent capacity at seated outdoor events
  • The “green dots” on public transport will be in effect again, limiting capacity on trains, buses, etc.
  • No travelling outside metropolitan Sydney for people living in Sydney’s inner west, Bayside, and Canada Bay areas

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