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Going out, travel, recreation and gathering in Queensland

Movement and Gathering Direction (No. 4)

What has changed since 2 September

The Direction has been updated to:

Overview

Due to recently announced cases in Queensland extra restrictions have now been put in place for movement and gatherings in listed Local Government Areas.

These restrictions mean you:

  • can have a maximum of 10 people in your home, including the members of your household that live there. The visitors can be from different households
  • can have a public gathering with a maximum of 10 people including yourself and members of your household
  • can’t have any visitors if you have 10 or more people living in your household.
Extra restrictions have also been put in place for movement and gatherings in areas outside of listed local government areas.

These restrictions mean you can:

  • have a maximum of 30 people in your home, including the members of your household that live there. The visitors can be from different households
  • have a public gathering with a maximum of 30 people including yourself and members of your household.

It is important to read this Direction in conjunction with the Restrictions on Business, Activities and Undertakings Direction (No.5).

Advice on going out, travel, recreation and gathering in Queensland

Together Queenslanders have slowed the spread of COVID-19 by following advice and using common sense to safeguard ourselves and our communities. As a result, the Queensland Government will continue to ease restrictions on getting together, outings and recreational activities within Queensland.

Queenslanders can travel anywhere in Queensland for any reason. There is no limit on distance. You can stay overnight anywhere in Queensland for as many nights as you like.

Please refer to the Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction (No. 5) for how the businesses, activities and undertakings should operate from midday 3 July 2020.

Protecting our most vulnerable

Special visitor rules apply for aged care facilities, hospitals and disability accommodation providers.

Remember

You must practice physical distancing as much as possible and:

  • wash your hands regularly with soap and water, and use alcohol-based sanitiser
  • avoid hugs, kisses and handshakes
  • wherever possible keep at least 1.5 metres away, two big steps, from people you don’t live with.

For full details, read the Movement and Gathering Direction (No. 4).

Questions and Answers about this Direction

Questions about gatherings

How many visitors can I have at my house, at any one time?

If you live in a Restricted Local Government Area you can have a maximum of ten people in your home including the members of your household. Those people can be from different households. If you already have 10 or more people residing in your household, you cannot have any visitors.

If you do not live in a listed restricted Local Government area you can have a maximum of 30 people in your home including the members of your household.

Visitors do not include:

  • people who live with you
  • workers or volunteers providing goods or services, such as disability services or tradesperson doing repairs.

You and your visitors should still practise physical distancing as much as you can. This means:

  • keep at least 1.5 metres away from other people (two big steps)
  • wash your hands regularly with soap and water or use alcohol-based sanitiser
  • avoid hugs, kisses and handshakes.

Who is a member of my household?

Members of your household are the people who ordinarily reside in your home.

Do children count in the limits on number of people?

Children and infants are included in the total numbers where limits are indicated.

Can you have many visits throughout the day?

Yes, there is no limit to the number of visits you can accept in a day. But we want to remind Queenslanders that limited contact with other people is one of the best ways to slow the spread of COVID-19. Always practice social distancing, even when you’re visiting another household so keep two big steps away from other people and avoid hugs, kisses and handshakes.

But if you’re sick, stay home. If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, go and get tested.

Can I have people come to my home to help me or complete repairs?

Yes. You may have a worker or volunteer come to your house, such as a tradesperson, to help you or complete repairs on your home. Volunteers and workers are not counted as visitors. Practise social distancing and good hygiene as much as you can.

Can I hug or kiss the person I am visiting?

Only if you live in the same house with them. We know it’s really tough but limiting contact with other people is one of the best ways to slow the spread of COVID-19. Always practice physical distancing, even when you’re visiting another household so keep two big steps away from other people and avoid hugs, kisses and handshakes.

But if you’re sick, stay home. If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, go and get tested.

Can 400 people be in one park if it is 40 groups of 10?

Gatherings in public spaces must be limited to a maximum of 10 people within one group within restricted Local Government Areas. You are not permitted to organise mass gatherings in a public space.

Gatherings in public spaces must be limited to a maximum of 30 people within one group in areas not within restricted Local Government Areas. You are not permitted to organise mass gatherings in a public space.

We also still encourage you to use common sense when attending small public gatherings and if a park, or any other outdoor public space is over-crowded, go somewhere else for the time being.

We ask that Queenslanders in use common sense and good judgement, including maintaining plenty of distance between groups. Things to think about when deciding if a park is already too crowded include:

  • Is there plenty of distance between each group (can you play ball between each group; can you talk easily without overhearing another group)?
  • Is there an empty space for your group to sit comfortably, that is still a good distance from others?
  • Is there somewhere less crowded we can go to, that isn’t far from here to be on the safe side?

What is a gathering?

A gathering means a group of people coming together for a non-essential activity, like a party or a celebration.

When don’t the restrictions on gatherings apply?

The restrictions on gatherings do not apply in the following situations:

  • at a business, facility or service operating in accordance with, or not restricted under, the Restrictions on Businesses, Activities or Undertakings Direction (No. 5)
  • at an airport that is necessary for the normal business of the airport
  • on public transport and at public transport stations, stops and platforms
  • at a medical or health service facilities that is necessary for the normal business of the facilities
  • for emergency services and disaster management
  • at a residential aged care facility or a disability accommodation services that is necessary for the normal business of the facility or residence
  • at a prison, corrective services facility, detention centre or other place of custody
  • at a court or tribunal
  • for the purposes of an investigation or action by a law enforcement authority
  • for the purposes of complying with or giving effect to the exercise of power or function of a government agency or entity under a law
  • for the purposes of national security
  • at Parliament for the purpose of its normal operations
  • at a workplace that is necessary for the normal operation of those premises
  • at a school, university, educational institution or childcare facility that is necessary for the normal business of the facility
  • at an outdoor or indoor place where people transition through the place, for example Queen Street Mall or Central station
  • where the gathering is specified as exempt by the Chief Health Officer in writing.

Can I meet with a group of people outside of my home or organise a gathering in the park or another public space (other than my home)?

Yes, you can organise a gathering of up to 10 people outside of your home, in restricted Local Government Areas.

You can gather with people outside your home with either members of your household, or with nine other people and yourself (a total of 10).

In areas not listed as restricted Local Government Areas, a total of 30 people is allowed.

Remember to practise physical distancing as much as you can.

What if I want to celebrate events such as birthdays?

You can organise a gathering or party at your residence or in a public space (e.g. a park) with the allowable number of people: a maximum of 10 people at any one time in restricted Local Government Areas. In areas not listed as a restricted Local Government Area you can have up to 30 people attend in total.

You can only have more people at your event if your event is being run by a business that operates under the COVID Safe Framework.

Can businesses continue to service more people?

All businesses can continue to operate in line with the COVID Safe Framework. See the Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction for more information.

Why can businesses have more people than I can have at a private gathering?

Businesses have to comply with the COVID Safe Framework which sets out what requirements businesses under the Direction must comply with, to limit the possible spread of COVID-19. The same level of safeguards are not able to be mandated in a private setting.

How many people can attend my wedding?

A maximum of up to 100 people can attend wedding ceremonies that are conducted under a COVID Safe Plan regardless of the size of the venue. Social (or physical) distancing requirements still apply. Speak with the venue operators or your celebrant to determine the specific requirements of your wedding.

Wedding receptions and ceremonies held at a person’s residence (for example a backyard wedding) may have more people attend - if a business is engaged to manage the event and is operating under an approved COVID Safe Plan. For example, a catering company or event manager is operating under the Weddings Industry COVID Safe Plan.

Wedding services performed at a person’s residence in the restricted Local Government Areas can have a maximum of 10 people attend, including the couple, if there is no COVID Safe Plan in place. Only businesses can operate under a COVID Safe Plan as listed under the Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction, these are not available to individuals.

Wedding services performed at a person’s residence that is not located in the restricted Local Government Areas can have a maximum of 30 people attend, if there is no COVID Safe Plan in place.

A record of names and contact details of each guest must be kept for 56 days to assist in contact tracing if required.

No exemptions will be granted for weddings.

It is important if you are unwell, that you do not go to a wedding.

How many people can I have at a funeral?

Funerals conducted in a professional venue may be attended by a maximum of` 100 people irrespective of the size of the venue. These facilities must have an approved Covid Safe Plan.

It is important if you are unwell, that you do not go to a funeral.

A record of names and contact details of each guest must be kept for 56 days to assist in contact tracing if required.

Private ceremonies performed in public areas and spaces in the restricted Local Government Areas can have a maximum of 10 people attend including the service director.

Private ceremonies performed in public areas and spaces not within in the restricted Local Government Areas can have a maximum of 30 people attend including the service director.

How many people can attend a religious service?

Places of worship can have one person per 4 square metres. However, if the place of worship is less than 200 square metres, then the venue can have one person per 2 square metres, up to a total of 50 people at either private or public services.

How many people can attend a civil services, cultural ceremonies or non-denominational services?

Civil services, cultural ceremonies or non-denominational services (for example naming ceremony) can have one person per 4 square metres. If the venue is less than 200 square metres, then there can be one person per 2 square metres, up to a maximum of 50 people.

Can people from the same household go outside with people from another house (to the park, etc.)?

Yes. Gatherings in public spaces must be limited to a maximum of 10 people within one group within restricted Local Government Areas. You are not permitted to organise mass gatherings in a public space.

Gatherings in public spaces must be limited to a maximum of 30 people within one group in areas not within restricted Local Government Areas. You are not permitted to organise mass gatherings in a public space.

Use common sense about keeping a safe distance away from others or choose another park where there are less people.

Also, remember, practise physical distancing whenever possible by keeping two big steps away from each other, wash your hands regularly with soap and water or use alcohol-based sanitiser and stay home if you are sick.

Can I complete a COVID Safe Event Checklist for a private event, e.g. a naming ceremony?

Only businesses can operate under a COVID Safe Event Checklist as listed under the Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction, these are not available to individuals.

For example, if you plan to host a naming ceremony in your backyard – and you have a business engaged to manage the event that is operating under an approved COVID Safe Plan, the event can have more people attend. As long as, the event is held in line with the rules of the relevant COVID Safe Plan for example the Weddings Industry COVID Safe Plan.

If the event is not operating under a COVID Safe Plan then it will be limited to the maximum number of visitors allowed under the Movement and Gathering Direction. That is a maximum of 10 people at any one time in your home if you live within a restricted Local Government Area. If you live outside of a restricted Local Government area, the maximum amount of people that can attend is 30.

If I get a caterer, operating under a COVID Safe Plan, to drop off food for an event - can I invite more people?

No. In order for the event to occur with larger numbers the cater would need to do more than just deliver and set up the food for the function, they would need to be responsible for the management of the whole event. That means the caterer would need to take full responsibility and have control over the event, including (but not limited to) collecting all contact tracing information, ensure physical distancing is practised and make sure people are seated while eating and drinking. There will also need to be someone present from the business who is able to respond to any questions from a emergency public health officer if required.

Why can’t I host large events anymore?

These are difficult decisions, however these restrictions are in place for the protection of Queenslanders. Unstructured gatherings are a high risk for the spread of COVID-19, this has been seen again and again during the pandemic.

I own a private property that also operates as a commercial business, can I host an event with more people?

You can only host more people on your private property if you normally run events on your property and you operate under a relevant COVID Safe plan.

For example, if your private property is a vineyard and you normally operate a wedding business on this and comply with the Weddings Industry COVID Safe plan then you can continue to have more than the maximum number of people as outlined in the Movement and Gathering Direction. Alternatively, if your private property is a commercial farm business and event management is not part of your normal operations then you will have to comply with the allowable number of people as outlined in the Movement and Gathering Direction–a maximum of 10 people at any one time in restricted Local Government Areas. In areas not listed as a restricted Local Government Area you can have up to 30 people attend in total.

Questions about travelling

How far can I travel from home?/Where can I travel in Queensland?

You can travel anywhere in Queensland. There is no limit on distance.

We’re asking Queenslanders to continue to practise physical distancing, good hygiene and stay at home if they are sick.

Can I stay overnight at a hotel or at someone’s house?

Yes, you can leave home to stay overnight anywhere within Queensland for as many nights as you like. This means you can go camping, stay in an Airbnb, have a night away in a hotel, head to that cosy bed and breakfast, or stay over at a friend’s house.

We’re asking Queenslanders to continue to practise physical distancing, good hygiene and stay at home if they are sick.

Are there any limits on how many nights I can stay away from home?

You can stay overnight anywhere in Queensland for as many nights as you prefer.

Where can I stay?

You can stay in any form of accommodation – including hotels, B&Bs, Airbnb, caravan parks and hostels.

Can I go camping?

Yes, Queenslanders can get back to camping. The Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction (No. 5) outlines restrictions currently in place for camping grounds so they can ensure they are protecting campers.

Do I need a valid reason to leave my home?

No. You can leave your home for whatever reason you wish. We’re asking Queenslanders to continue to practise physical distancing, good hygiene and stay at home if they are sick.

When will interstate travel be allowed? / When will the border between QLD and NSW be open? And other states and territories? / When will you re-open the state border?

Other states and territories control their own borders and may have restrictions in place. While some places may re-open making it possible for people to leave Queensland, restrictions may still apply if/when returning to Queensland depending on whether you are a resident and where you have been. For more information, please refer to the Border Restrictions Direction.

Can I travel across the Queensland border?

The Queensland border is still subject to restrictions. If you travel across the border, your re-entry into Queensland may be subject to restriction. For more information, see the Border Restrictions Direction.

When will international travel be allowed?

This will be determined by the Federal Government as they manage the international border.

Why are these restrictions different to those in other states and territories?

The states and territories all have different considerations and are at different stages in their response to COVID-19. It was agreed at National Cabinet that the states and territories are responsible for implementing and rolling back restrictions for their own states and territories.

It is because Queenslanders have understood and cooperated with our restrictions and directives so well that we have been able to gradually ease restrictions within our state.

I have a terminally ill relative in the hospital, can I visit them?

Yes. You can visit a terminally ill relative in the hospital. Anyone visiting a hospital needs to follow the Hospital Visitors Direction.

Do I continue to work from home, or am I allowed to go back to work at the office?

You can return to your workplace, including office workers. Please talk to your employer about their return to work plan. Remember:

  • if you are sick, don’t go to work. If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, no matter how mild, you should get tested immediately

  • physical distancing and hygiene rules remain in place in all circumstances including regular hand washing and wherever possible remaining 1.5 metres away from non-household members.

Should I attend my university/TAFE/technical classes in person?

Universities, TAFE and other educational institutions are open for face to face learning and need to observe physical distancing. There should be no more than one person per 4 square metres in large lecture settings.

Smaller educational and teaching sessions are not subject to the one person per 4 square metres rule, but physical distancing must be observed whenever possible. Please refer to your place of learning for more information about classes.

Is it safe to catch the bus or train?

Public transport is still safe to take and TransLink has a plan to safeguard passengers and staff. Check out Translink’s COVID-19 travel updates and healthy travel tips for more information. Practice physical distancing, ideally stay 1.5 metres apart as much as possible, and wash your hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rubs regularly.

Where it is not possible to maintain social distancing you may wish to wear a face mask.

Questions about recreation

What if I go to a beach or the park, and someone sits too close to me?

We’re urging all Queenslanders to maintain a physical distancing of 1.5 metres, think two big steps away from another person, wherever possible. Please use common sense.

Can my children participate in after school sports?

Yes, community sports are on again. See the Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction (No. 5) for more information.

Further information regarding the Return to Play for Sport, recreation and fitness activities can be found here.

Can I go to a community facility, such as a community centre, youth centre or PCYCs?

Community facilities are open and able to provide community services. They must ensure physical distancing is observed and hygiene is maintained.

For community centres and clubs that offer multiple activities such as sports and dining, refer to the Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction.

Questions around the roadmap to easing restrictions

What will happen if people don’t follow the rules and cases go up again?

Restrictions are being lifted because Queenslanders are doing a great job at listening to health advice and following the rules. However, there is the potential for our state to require tougher restrictions to be enforced if people don’t abide by the new restrictions.

How will this be enforced?

Queensland Police and enforcement officers will enforce the lifting of these restrictions and ensure Queenslanders are doing their part to slow the spread. Industry and business regulators will also play a role in ensuring organisations are compliant with restrictions.

If a business isn’t adhering to the rules, what do I do?

If you think a business has broken any rules, you can report them to PoliceLink on 131 444 or to their relevant industry regulator.

What about people who are more at risk?

We strongly urge all people with a compromised immune system and people with chronic medical conditions to take extra precautions to reduce their risk, like strictly adhering to physical distancing and hygiene guidelines and avoiding situations where they may come into contact with a lot of people. We also recommend they talk to their doctor about their individual situation.

What about First Nations communities?

From midday 10 July 2020 entry and quarantine restrictions no longer apply for First Nations communities.

Residents of remote communities and those visiting them must follow all existing Chief Health Officer Directions.

There may be additional restrictions for specific First Nations communities located in restricted local government areas.

What modelling exists?

The Commonwealth has released modelling about what the progression of the virus may look like in Australia. That modelling was considered when this plan was developed.

Will there be more cases?

It is likely we will see more cases. We have very clear monitoring systems in place. Our healthcare system is prepared and has capacity to handle any new cases. We need to take special care of people who are vulnerable to COVID-19, so that they avoid catching the virus. For example, special measures on visiting in residential aged care facilities.

Will the original restrictions be put back in place again? Why/Why not? When?

While we’re easing some restrictions, it’s essential Queenslanders continue to do the right thing and abide by the restrictions that are in place. The last thing we want is to see the number of cases in Queensland grow. We’re working towards getting Queenslanders back to normal living.

Other general questions and advice

Has physical distancing changed?

No. You should continue to practise physical distancing when you leave your home. This includes keeping 1.5 metres or two big steps away from each other and avoid hugs, kisses and handshakes.

Are there penalties if I don’t comply?

Yes. If you don’t comply you may be given an on-the-spot fine of $1,334 for individuals and $6,670 for corporations, a court-imposed penalty of up to $13,345 or 6 months imprisonment.

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