Coronavirus Victoria: Melbourne roadmap out of stage four lockdown detailed by Daniel Andrews
Victoria's pathway out of lockdown was unveiled today, prompting a stern warning from Prime Minister Scott Morrison about job losses.
After reporting the lowest case numbers in weeks, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has revealed the state’s pathway out of lockdown.
Melburnians, who are living under stage four restrictions – some of the toughest in the world – and regional Victorians, under stage three restrictions, have learned about the Government’s long-awaited, four-step plan to ease toward a “COVID-safe normal”.
Not all will be happy with the plan, with metropolitan Melbourne to stay in stage four lockdown (with some changes) until September 28.
But, Mr Andrews told reporters, “this is the only option”.
“As hard as this news will be for so many Victorians today, it’s the only option, and I would, with the greatest of respect to everyone, what would be even harder news would be to convince yourself and think, because the government of the day told you this is over, we can go back to normal, only for me to have you stand here again, in a few weeks’ time and say we got it wrong, it’s back again, and now we have to shut down again,” he said.
The Premier said he wanted the sacrifices Victorians had made to “count for something”, not be “frittered away with another lockdown”.
“And when I say another lockdown, probably multiple lockdowns. Because a third wave would be even more challenging than the second, it just will be,” he warned.
“We have got to stay on this. See it off, finish properly, open up and stay open. That is what I’m aiming to do, and that is what I am spending literally every moment focused on.”
Following the announcement, the federal government announced it will scrutinise Mr Andrews’ handling of the pandemic, warning extensions to the lockdown will result in more job losses.
A joint statement from Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and Health Minister Greg Hunt described the news as “crushing”, and said it “will come at a further economic cost”.
This morning, the state reported its lowest number of new cases in weeks, with 63 new infections and, sadly, five deaths in the past 24 hours.