Change to Public Health Directions to support businesses
(AS AT MONDAY 30 NOVEMBER 2020)
(information will be updated as it becomes available)
Dear proprietor and industry partners
The ACT Chief Health Officer Dr Kerryn Coleman today announced the move to Stage 4 of Canberra’s recovery plan with further easing of restrictions to take effect at 9am on Wednesday 2 December 2020, subject to the ACT’s COVID-19 situation remaining stable.
These changes reflect the ACT’s continued positive response to COVID-19 restrictions and improvement in neighbouring jurisdictions when it comes to COVID-19 cases.
One of the most significant changes is the ability of venues to increase occupancy across venues if they are using the Check In CBR app to collect patron contact details. The Check In CBR app is free, secure and convenient and enables ACT Health to quickly access patron information to quickly alert people who may have been in contact with a person with COVID-19 if required.
Occupancy Levels – There will be three options available for businesses and venues – including hospitality, clubs, gyms, real estate and other premises:
· Option 1: 25 people (excluding staff) across the whole venue.
· Option 2: Where the Check In CBR app is used:
o one person per two square metres of usable space in each indoor and outdoor space (excluding staff), with a maximum of 500 people for each space.
To utilise the updated occupancy rules, you must have registered for the Check In CBR app by Thursday, 16 December 2020 at the very latest. We encourage you to register early to ensure that you can comply with the new Directions by this date.
o Information on how to register for the free ‘Check In’ CBR app is available at https://www.covid19.act.gov.au/business-and-work/check-in-cbr
· Option 3: Where the Check In CBR app is NOT used:
o one person per four square metres of usable space in each indoor space (excluding staff), with a maximum of 500 people for each space, and
o one person per two square metres of usable space in each outdoor space (excluding staff), with a maximum of 500 people for each space.
Please note: Patrons in hospitality venues must continue to remain seated if consuming alcohol indoors.
Remember: Businesses must not exceed any capacity limit that applies under standard liquor or fire occupancy loading and regulatory conditions of the venue.
Key points with the changes
· Businesses, such as clubs and gyms, that may have other electronic sign in systems to record patron details for other regulatory/membership purposes, must run both systems in parallel if they wish to move to a one person per two square metre density calculation (ie. your existing system does not replace the need for the Check In CBR app to be used).
· Cinemas and movie theatres that use the Check In CBR app to collect patron contact details can sell up to 65% capacity of each theatre (in accordance with new gathering restrictions), up to 500 people per cinema or theatre.
o Otherwise, cinemas and theatres must continue to maintain 50% capacity.
· Enclosed outdoor venues with permanent tiered seating and grandstands can have up to 65% capacity, up to 1,500 people, provided events are ticketed and seated and a COVID Safe Plan is in place for each event.
· GIO Stadium and Manuka Oval will be able to have crowds of up to 65 per cent capacity, so long as each event held at these venues has an appropriate COVID Safe Plan in place.
Signage – All venues, facilities and businesses must clearly display their occupancy allowance at the entrance to the venue and each individual usable space, where separate spaces exist.
· COVID-19 Safety Plan – All venues, facilities and businesses must develop and follow a COVID Safety Plan. It is important that COVID Safety Plans are updated regularly, to reflect changes in restrictions.
o Note: COVID-19 safety plans must be available for inspection by an authorised officer – it is strongly recommended all venues keep them readily accessible at their sites.
· Contact Tracing – Businesses, venues, and facilities are required to request contact information from patrons and retain this information for 28 days.
· Nightclubs remain closed but can continue to operate as bars through a permit arrangement, provided through Access Canberra.
Help for business
· Choose CBR – This week the ACT Government launched ChooseCBR, a new digital discount voucher initiative designed to support businesses and jobs by encouraging spending at local businesses across Canberra.
With $500,000 worth of discounts to be provided to the community to use at local businesses during December, ChooseCBR is a great way to give your business a boost by attracting customers and boosting sales.
Register now to get your application approved before launch on 9 December 2020.
We have attached a flyer with more information on the ChooseCBR initiative.
· Other help – Did you know, the ACT Government is also offering support to help businesses recover from the financial effects of COVID-19? Find out more about support available to you on the COVID-19 website at: www.covid19.act.gov.au/business-hub/economic-survival-package.
· Further information is available on the ACT Government’s website https://www.covid19.act.gov.au.
· The Access Canberra Business Liaison Team is available to answer questions or provide advice. Reach the team on (02) 6205 0900.
· The updated Public Health Direction will be available prior to the change commencing on the https://www.covid19.act.gov.au/what-you-can-do/act-public-health-directions
It’s important to remember that these changes do not take effect until 9am on 2 December 2020 and you will receive further correspondence confirming the changes. Until this time, the existing Public Health Direction remains in effect.
Your ongoing cooperation and proactive compliance with the Public Health Direction is greatly appreciated as we work to support our community’s safety and Canberra’s recovery from COVID-19.
Updated November 30, 2020