4 September / COVID-19

National Cabinet - Media Announcements

The following announcements have just been made at a press conference with the Prime Minister and Acting Chief Medical Officer:

Australia can’t be taken for granted, its federation is a happy work in progress with National Cabinet being part of that.

This year with the COVID pandemic and the COVID recession, has been one of the hardest in many generations.

If each National Cabinet state & territory just went their own way at the beginning of the pandemic, Australia would have fallen short in getting on top of the virus.

National Cabinet was set up to find a way to work through issues, challenges & disagreements.

All states and territories now have different priorities based on where they are in the pandemic so 100% consensus is not achievable and should no longer be the aim. Agreement should be the goal but “not everyone has to get on the bus”, but it is important that “anyone not getting on the bus knows it has to leave”.

7 out of 8 states & territories agreed to getting back to a cohesive plan by December (WA was the exception).

Currently fashioning a new plan to determine both health and economic outcomes that will work moving forward, e.g. how testing should work & surveillance testing arrangements (like sewage testing). 

As Australia opens up, it means making sure people can move around. National Cabinet agreed that central to this is the hotspot plan – which is a big part of the overall plan. Hotspots need to be more specifically defined and this is what is now being worked on.

Australia needs to move beyond a situation of hard borders, but instead look to creating a national hotspot definition and use that instead. States & territories will have some bilateral movement and multi-lateral movement plans that will form part of this plan.

VIC-NSW-SA borders – each of these states is keen to get them open to each other as soon as possible. 

TAS wants its border down by December. 

WA has said they won’t join in the journey of plan but will continue to work with the group. However, they have their own priorities and are quite different – there is virtually no large border towns along WA border and WA economy very different to states like SA/TAS.

More sustainable system is required as the world may not have a vaccine for years. No one is asking border closures to come down right now, but all need to be looking ahead to further stages in months and years to come. Need to get to an agreement on this.

Agricultural Code – five out of the eight states are on board. QLD, WA, TAS didn’t join onto this but will continue to listen in on discussions. VIC, SA, NSW will put immediately in place.

NSW has been doing all the heavy lifting on international arrivals with Australians coming home. Trying to now get flights to go into other states as well to spread the load.

Spoke to PM Ardern – Australia will be looking at applying national hotspot approach to NZ as well. NZers will be able to come to Australia at right time. If no COVID in QLD and no COVID in Christchurch, they should be able to come to Sydney, for example. 

Update from BOM – upcoming weather season, emergency processes should be seamless with prospect of bushfires, cyclones and floods – need for quick movement of firefighters and defence personnel across states/borders without imposing quarantine. 

Benchmark report on mental health was received – mental health supports and DV supports are being put in place as best as possible recognising the stresses people are facing right now.

Current case data: ~26,000 cases total in Australia and 737 deaths. This is in comparison to the total cases worldwide which is 26 million. That means Australia has 1 / 1000th of world cases.

Halved the number of cases in VIC in recent times which is great to see.

Less than 100 cases nationally declared today with no cases in 6 states. Particularly – no cases in QLD which is good to see whilst the state remains on high alert. 

~67,000 tests were conducted nationally yesterday.

In a separate news conference, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced he will detail the Victoria Roadmap to Recovery this Sunday including details specific to industry (which we will provide an update of immediately after announcement). 

The Premier stated that the primary objective of the roadmap is to ease out of the current restrictions in a safe and controlled manner, so that case numbers do not immediately jump up again (meaning everything done so far would have been for nothing). 

The Premier reiterated that keeping Coronavirus numbers down is to preserve health care not only for Coronavirus patients but for any and all emergency health care required (heart attacks, motor accidents, strokes etc). 

The Victorian Treasurer also gave details about extensions and relaxation of criteria to rental residents and landlord circumstances in light of the strict lockdown measures. 

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26 October / COVID-19

Victorian Premier Media Announcements

Please note this is a public announcement – not an announcement from Hutchies

The following announcements have just been made:

In metropolitan Melbourne, from 11:59pm on Tuesday October 27:

> Construction industry: 100% workforce capacity. Site visit limit on specialist contractors removed. Other additional obligations remain in place. 

> All retail will reopen. 

> Restaurants, hotels, cafes and bars will reopen as well.

> In indoor venues, there will be a maximum of 20 people, seated, with 10 people per space subject to density requirements (1 per 4m2).

> In outdoor venues, a maximum of 50 people with one person per two square metres.

> Beauty, personal services and tattooing, provided you can wear a mask, will reopen.

> Outdoor community sport for under 18 and outdoor noncontact sport for adults will recommence as well. 

> The four reasons to leave home will be removed.

> The 25 kilometre travel limit remains in place and the regional metropolitan border remains in place.

> Gatherings will no longer be limited to just two households to can be more than two households but the group cannot exceed 10.

> Weddings will increase to a maximum of 10 people. Funerals will increase to a maximum of 20 mourners.

> For religious gatherings, indoor there will be a maximum of 10 people plus a faith leader. Outdoor there will be a maximum of 20 people plus one faith leader.

In metropolitan Melbourne, from 11:59pm on Sunday November 8:

> 25 kilometre travel limit will lift.

> The metropolitan Melbourne regional border will lift.

> Gyms and fitness studios will open, with a maximum of 20 people per space, one person per 8 square metres.

> Restaurants, hotels, cafes and bars will move to an indoor maximum of 40 with 10 people per space, an outdoor maximum of 70 people with one person every 2 square metres.

> Religious gatherings will allow a maximum of 50 people, plus one faith leader, outdoors; indoors will be 20 people maximum plus one faith leader.

> Funerals: 20 mourners indoors; 50 mourners outdoors.

> Indoor community sport, non-contact sport for under-18 and sports capable of 1.5-metre social distancing can operate.

> Indoor pools will open for up to 20 people.

> Accommodation will reopen.

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22 October / COVID-19

Please take the time to review the lists below and if you have been at one of the venues at the time identified, inform your Team Leader and make arrangements to be tested and work from home until you receive a negative result.

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22 October / COVID-19

Latest COVID-19 case locations in VIC

Please note this is a public announcement – not an announcement from Hutchies.

Updated: 22 October 2020

Please take the time to review the lists below and if you have been at one of the venues at the time identified, inform your Team Leader and make arrangements to be tested.

Outbreaks

There are currently a number of cases linked to the Chadstone, Shepparton and Kilmore outbreaks. If you have visited any of the sites, or are a close contact please get tested.

Case alerts – public exposure sites

If you have visited any of the locations listed in the table below during the date indicated for the next 14 days you should:

  1. Watch for coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms.
  2. If symptoms occur, immediately get tested and stay at home while you wait for your results.
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20 October / COVID-19

Dear All,

On the 16th October Version 08 of the COVID-19 Industry Guideline was released (Guideline attached including the note on changes made).

I have attached our updated Management plan and attached copies of the following appendices that have changed which will need to be reviewed and completed as required:

  • Appendix 02 – Site Compliance Checklist also known as the High Risk COVID Management Plan
  • Daily Prestart template with updated declaration. (For those using a sign in device, I have also amended this)
  • COVID Management plan – Section 6 item 10. You must include the name of the cleaning business and contact number you have nominated should there be a positive case on your project.

One change that is Industry specific that is worth highlighting can be found under section 5.1 Fit For Screening please see below:

  • Initial declaration is to be conducted by all workers (this includes any person who attends site), including current and new starters. Each worker must provide a declaration that they to the best of their knowledge:
  • have not been diagnosed with coronavirus (COVID-19) in the last 14 days, or
  • are not in a period of 14-day quarantine as directed by a health professional, or
  • have not been overseas in the last 14 days, or
  • have not been in contact with anyone who has coronavirus (COVID-19), or
  • have not been in contact with anyone who is currently being tested for coronavirus (COVID-19), or
  • do not have anyone in their household who has symptoms consistent with COVID-19
  • If a worker declares any of the above, they will not be granted access to site and will be required to produce evidence of a negative COVID-19 test within the last 5 days, prior to commencing work.

  • Once the initial declaration has been made by the worker, ongoing screening (phase 2) should be conducted for every worker prior to the start of their shift, asking to the best of their knowledge:
    • have they been overseas in the last 14 days,
    • have they been in contact with anyone who has coronavirus (COVID-19),
    • have they been in contact with anyone who is currently being tested for coronavirus (COVID-19),
    • do they have anyone in their household who has symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or works in a high-risk industry
    • have they been directed to self-isolate for a 14-day period? (in which case, they must not be permitted to work)
  • If a worker declares any of the above, they will not be granted access to site and will be required to produce evidence of a negative COVID-19 test within the last 5 days, prior to commencing work.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any questions or if I can be of assistance to you.

Regards,

Candece Frazzica-Kara
HSE Manager (VIC)

Mobile 0411 022 839
Email Candece.Frazzica-Kara@hutchinsonbuilders.com.au 

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22 October / Public Holiday

Thursday, 22 October 2020

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21 October / Observation

Ride2Work encourages everyday people to jump on the bike and get active on their way to work.

Currently two thirds of Australians don’t get enough exercise to maintain their health. At the same time, our cities are being choked by traffic. Health and congestion costs are draining billions out of our economy each year. We must do more to get people out of cars and on to bikes. 

Riding to work is one of the easiest and most time-efficient ways to fit exercise into a daily routine. By swapping the car, train or bus for a bike, you can get your recommended daily exercise without having to spend extra time or money at the gym. We promise you’ll be happier and healthier for it! 

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13 October / COVID-19

Latest COVID-19 case locations in VIC

Please note this is a public announcement – not an announcement from Hutchies.

Please take the time to review the lists below and if you have been at one of the venues at the time identified, inform your Team Leader and make arrangements to be tested.

If you have visited any of the locations listed in the table below during the date indicated for the next 14 days you should:

  1. Watch for coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms.
  2. If symptoms occur, immediately get tested and stay at home while you wait for your results.
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9 October / COVID-19

Please take the time to review the lists below and if you have been at one of the venues at the time identified, inform your Team Leader and make arrangements to be tested and work from home until you receive a negative result.

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8 October / COVID-19

Staying Alert

As case numbers continue to fall around the country, it is important to keep up all of the practical step that have been employed since the start of this pandemic. Each person’s individual effort contributes to keeping case numbers low, particularly given that outbreaks are likely to continue in Australia until a vaccine is available.

Part of our collective responsibility is ensuring that we each recognise coronavirus symptoms and get tested if we experience any of these (listed below). 

This is especially important if we have visited a venue or location of concern at the same time as a confirmed case. Each state / territory publishes a list that is updated as outbreaks occur.

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