Extra waiting game

Premier to announce today how, when restrictions will be eased
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PREMIER Daniel Andrews will confirm today and during this week what changes will be made to Victoria wide COVID-19 restrictions people have endured since March 23.

It follows a three-step plan announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday afternoon which gives the green light to children returning to school, restaurants, cafes and shops reopening, and services such as libraries and community centres.

However, Mr Andrews did warn that Victoria’s plan will be different to the national strategy and he also said there might be a time lapse between the announcements of changes and when they actually take effect.

“The key point is that even at the end of this week or even at the end of May, there will still be rules in place,” Mr Andrews said.

“I know it’s frustrating, I know that we’re getting very close to making an important step to ease a range of these rules but now is not the time to become so impatient and so frustrated that we start doing the wrong thing and jeopardising the progress we’ve all made together.”

In relation to each state having its own say on what type and when individual restrictions will be lifted, Mr Andrews said “trying to pretend there is some national average – that would be silly”.

“While this is a three phase framework, it will be realised in different ways in different states.”

He put up a stern warning to anybody who thinks they can flout the rules that “Victoria Police are out there and they will find people”.

“I hope they don’t have to do that and I hope that people realise that we’re so close, let’s just stay the course on this,” he said.

The Premier indicated that because Victoria has more community transmissions than other states, there needs to be a delay on easing of restrictions.

He also said they needed to wait for test results to come back before they could signal any leniency on existing rules.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the nation wishes to gain ground lost on the economy but “we cannot be too timid”.

“States will move at their own pace and will cut and paste out of this plan to suit their own circumstances,” Mr Morrison said.

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