You’ve hunkered down, made some sacrifices and done a “terrific job” of flattening the curve.
To the isolators, go the spoils — you can now have a picnic.
Some of Queensland’s coronavirus restrictions have eased from this morning, allowing you to head outside your homes for some recreation.
Before you grab your blanket and some brie here’s a list of what you can and can’t do.
Three golden rules
Even with the cutback in restrictions, there’s still three key rules Queenslanders need to follow.
- 1.Hygiene and social distancing must be maintained, so staying 1.5 metres away from others still applies.
- 2.You have to stay within 50 kilometres of your home.
- 3.Outings are limited to members of your own household, or yourself and one other person.
Queensland police have put on extra officers this weekend and if you’re stopped, expect to be asked if you and others you’re with are from the same household, or if you’re within that 50 kilometres radius from home.
Deputy Commissioner Steve Gollschewski said when you’re out and about, it’s a “plus-one scenario”.
“Where we apply discretion with this is if it’s a family unit plus one, we will talk to people about what they’re doing and take a common sense approach,” he said.
Picnics and parks
With the above in mind, you and your household can go for a drive and stop at the park or the beach.
If you’re by yourself, a friend or someone who doesn’t live in your household can tag along, no worries.
Some of the state’s politicians are already making plans to do this — if you’re around Redcliffe, you might spot Health Minister Steven Miles having fish and chips on the beach with his family.
Don’t go overboard with socialising though, the advice still is that if you can reduce the number of people you have contact with, the chances of getting and spreading COVID-19 are dramatically reduced.
“What we don’t want is groups of friends meeting up with other friends at this stage, that’s not what we’re saying,” Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said last week.
But what this does effectively mean is that you can get takeaway and eat it in a public place, so there’s no need to run around with your kebabs anymore.
Have your colleagues seen you wear the same shirt too many times on your video conference call?
Good news — you can now shop for non-essentials like clothes and shoes.
Some shopping centres have remained open and some that closed began reopening this week.
If you do choose to pick up some new threads, social distancing rules in shops certainly still apply.
Ms Palaszczuk has also encouraged you to get in — and get out.
It’s also probably best to check if a store will be open first, with larger stores like Myer still closed apart from click and collect, and many small retailers undecided on reopening.
Driving, motorbike riding, boating, even getting on your jet ski — go for gold.
Keep in mind the three rules above though.
If you’re in the category of people vulnerable to coronavirus, you’ve been encouraged to go for a drive or visit places without crowds instead of some of the other activities listed above.
What hasn’t changed?
You still can’t have any parties with your mates.
Ms Palaszczuk said if the State Government does see mass gatherings, “I will not hesitate to clamp back down”.
Schools are still only open for children of essential workers or vulnerable students.
Queensland’s borders and playgrounds will remain closed.
Queensland Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young said she was confident if the new restrictions were adhered too and followed, “we won’t see additional cases”.
“If this works in two weeks’ time, we’ll be able to look at what else we can do and we can gradually try and get back to normal as much as we possibly can,” Dr Young said.
The latest direction from Queensland’s Chief Health Officer if you want to check it out is on the Queensland Health website.
And while travel restrictions have been eased, the same border restrictions apply heading to and from New South Wales.
I hope this article has cleared up any confusion over what this relaxing of restrictions will mean for you. For help clearing up confusion surrounding your finances please do get in touch, we are here to help.
Article by Tim Swanston for ABC News.