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Monday, July 6, 2020

Victoria reimposes ‘stay-at-home’ orders on coronavirus hotspots for four weeks

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Victorians living in suburbs at the centre of fresh coronavirus outbreaks will only be allowed to leave their house for essential activities from Wednesday night. 

Premier Daniel Andrews on Tuesday announced stay-at-home orders would be reimposed on coronavirus hotspots after a 14th-straight day of double-digit growth in new cases.

Under the restrictions, people can only leave their homes to exercise, go to school or work, undertake care responsibilities, and buy food and other essentials.

Victoria reported 64 new cases on Tuesday, taking the total number of cases in the state to 2,159.

Mr Andrews said the number of cases was “unacceptably high” and something that “poses a real threat to all of us”.

“We know that suburban lockdowns, stay-at-home orders are a series of restrictions that work,” he told reporters.

“We have all been through that journey, we have all been through that process and we know that at the end of that process we are then able to begin the process of opening up.”

Of the new cases reported on Tuesday, six are part of the Stamford Plaza outbreak and were already in quarantine.

There are two new cases linked to Albanvale Primary School and two staff at a delivery service centre, StarTrack in Tullamarine, have tested positive to the virus. Both StarTrack employees worked while infectious and contact tracing is underway. 

Five childcare centres will also undergo a deep clean after positive cases were identified there. 

Four previous cases have been reclassified, so the total number of cases in the state has risen by 60 to 2,159.

Victoria has launched a door knocking and testing blitz in response to the fresh outbreaks and is considering tightening restrictions in Melbourne suburbs at the centre of the spike.  

Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Tuesday threw his support behind a potential lockdown of Melbourne suburbs. 

The prime minister has also offered Commonwealth resources to secure the 10 suburban hot spots.

“If indeed a full local lockdown is required in those hot spots, then that’s the decision the premier will take,” Mr Morrison said.

“And they’ll take that decision with the full support and backing through resources from the Commonwealth government, as well as from other states and territories where that is necessary.”

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Check your state’s restrictions on gathering limits.

Testing for coronavirus is now widely available across Australia. If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.

The federal government’s coronavirus tracing app COVIDSafe is available for download from your phone’s app store.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at sbs.com.au/coronavirus.

Additional reporting by AAP.

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