South Australia to Ease Further Restrictions

Wednesday, May 20th, 2020

The South Australian government has announced a further easing of restrictions, with cafes and restaurants set to benefit.

From Friday, eateries can welcome a maximum of 20 patrons – 10 indoors and 10 outdoors – and will be allowed to serve alcohol as well.

That will be followed by pubs reopening on Friday June 5, in time for the long weekend.

SA’s Chief Public Health Officer Professor Nicola Spurrier says the restrictions are being eased ahead of schedule.

“We were able to do that because we’ve had not only no cases, but also South Australians have done exactly what they’ve been recommended to do and have continued to get themselves tested,” she says.

Premier Steven Marshall has also confirmed borders won’t be opened anytime soon.

Despite calls from other Premiers, Mr Marshall says health authorities in SA remain concerned with the spread of infections interstate, particularly in Victoria and New South Wales.

The Premier says South Australia has worked hard to be in a position of no new or active cases and this advantage won’t be quickly discarded.

SA has only had one COVID-19 case in the past 28 days, with no current active cases.

Meantime, regional holidays will resume in New South Wales from the start of June.

The state government has announced an end to the ban on holiday travel within the state, put in place to protect regional and rural areas from virus outbreaks.

Art galleries, libraries, and museums are also expected to be cleared to re-open, with social distancing enforced.

Tourism operators have welcomed the move.

It comes as four new cases have been confirmed in NSW.

Further north, Queensland’s Premier is defending her decision to keep that state’s borders shut until September.

A National Tourism body is calling for the Sunshine State’s borders to reopen in July, with a new survey showing Australians are keen to flock there when a ban on interstate travel is lifted.

Annastacia Palaszczuk says Queensland isn’t the only jurisdiction in Australia to impose a hard border closure, with Western Australia, the Northern Territory, South Australia, and Tasmania also imposing such measures.

Queensland’s Chief Health Officer is backing Ms Palaszczuk’s tough stance.

Dr Jeanette Young says she supports a plan to reopen the borders later this year.

“If the tourist industry wants a realistic scenario, then they should be preparing for September,” Dr Young says.

Just one new case of coronavirus has been detected in the state overnight.


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