NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has unveiled a three-stage roadmap out of lockdown, with the state expected to reach the 80 percent double-dose vaccination milestone by the end of October.
The “roadmap to freedom” blueprint, unveiled today, offers us a glimpse into what life will look like once 80 percent of people aged 16 or older are fully vaccinated against the virus.
As previously announced, the state will begin easing restrictions once 70 percent of the eligible population has been fully vaccinated, expected to fall around October 11th.
This phase will allow fully vaccinated people to welcome five people into their home, with limits on outdoor gatherings expanded to 20 people; retail and hospitality will return with a one-person per 4sqm rule; hairdressers will return, whilst stadiums, theme parks, and zoos will open with a cap of 5,000.
Once the state reaches an 80 percent double dose vaccination target, around two weeks later, NSW will introduce more significant freedoms.
Travel to regional NSW will return, residents will also be able to welcome 10 visitors to their home, community sport can resume, hospitality venues can reopen to standing patrons, people can attend a place of worship, and caps will be removed on funerals, weddings and personal services such as hairdressers.
Whilst the future of live music remains murky terrain, there’s a confusing contradiction between a capacity on indoor premises will returning to 1 person per 4 sqm indoors, 1 per 2 sqm outdoors and with stadiums opening at 5,000 capacity), it ultimately feels hopeful.
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NSW residents who remain unvaccinated will have to wait until the state reaches a 90 per cent double dose vaccination target before enjoying the same freedoms as the vaccinated. This final stage is expected to kick in around December 1st.
“I think today is a very disappointing day for those who aren’t vaccinated. I think they assumed when we hit 80 per cent double dose they will have certain freedoms,” Gladys Berejiklian said. “They will have to wait five or six weeks after others.”
“It’s not too late”, to get vaccinated, she urged. “You have the option, go today, make your booking and get vaccinated not only to protect yourself and your loved ones but also the community.”
Once NSW hits the 90 per cent vaccination target, it will up to businesses to decide whether they will allow unvaccinated people to enter their premises.