Victoria limps towards reopening

“The slow and tedious road out of Victoria’s COVID lockdown continued today with the announcement of minor changes to Victoria’s lockdown rules,” Tim Piper the Victorian Head of the peak employer association Ai Group said today.

“There are some important personal changes which will be greatly welcomed to enable Victorians to see family again. But businesses will remain in limbo waiting for a time they can properly open and make a living again.

“Retailers are hanging out to open properly and to have people in their stores, so are surprised that limited indoor dining is allowed but retail stores can’t allow people instore. There’s still the chance for a reconsideration of those restrictions.

“Many businesses have taken a hit on Friday telling some staff that they can’t work because they are not vaccinated.

“That’s a big issue for them and really tough for both the employers and employees. The Government now needs to offer employers and employees the benefits of those tough decisions and give them back their livelihoods. At the moment the level of uncertainty remains the most destabilising issue.

“The Government should not simply look at this in a black and white way. 80% double vaccinated is only a figure. Opening earlier for the racing carnival or to support other businesses is an option which must be considered whether we are at that benchmark or not.

“In the lead up to Christmas, every day counts for manufacturing, retail, event management and other industries. We need to be both optimistic and pragmatic with our re-opening and open further at the earliest opportunity,” Mr Piper said.

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