By Melissa Grant
Playgrounds will be among the facilities re-opened first as coronavirus restrictions are eased across the country.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has outlined the a three-step plan to lift the restrictions imposed to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
However, ultimately the states and territories will decide what restrictions are lifted and when.
Step one will see the reopening of playgrounds, libraries, community centres and bootcamps. Five visitors will also be allowed at homes, and 10 people will be allowed to gather at businesses and public places. Restaurants, cafes and shops will also be opened but with gathering restrictions.
States and territories will decide when to move through the three steps outlined as part of the ‘Roadmap to a COVID Safe Australia’.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said he would announce changes to restrictions next week.
Mr Andrews said the changes would be “considered and cautious”.
Mr Morrison said it was the aspiration, as agreed by premiers and chief ministers, that the country will have moved through the three steps come July.
“The pace, though, will totally be up to the states and territories. They’ll be responsible for setting their own timetable and communicating that to their citizens and residents in their own states and territories,” he explained.
“It is also important to note that movement from one step to the next will depend on three criteria that we have always outlined, and indeed, that is enabled us to move today, a week earlier than planned.
“Those criteria again – that the medical evidence suggests that further easing will not present an undue risk, widespread testing is identifying community transmission, and thirdly, public health actions are able to trace cases and trap local outbreaks.”
Mr Morrison again urged people to downlaod the COVIDSafe app, saying it would be even more important to keep families and communities safe as restrictions were lifted.