NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced a further relaxing of COVID rules in New South Wales relating to churches. These include the removal of venue caps and scrapping of the 4 square metre, replaced with a 2 square metre rule.
And, just in time for Christmas services, the NSW Premier announced that up to 50 performers will be now permitted indoors, with the advice for congregations “to continue wearing masks if singing.”
Under the changes, maximum capacity caps will be removed, subject to the 2 square metre rule for both weddings and funerals.
The announcements today should be most warmly received by larger churches which, as yet, had not been able to return to in-person services.
The changes come as NSW continues to record zero cases of community transmission – an effort commended by Berejiklian.
“We are grateful to the people in NSW for their patience and understanding over what has been an incredibly difficult year,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“The rolling back of restrictions across the state is only possible because of the excellent work of the community who have followed social distancing guidelines and continued to come forward for testing.”
The good news for NSW churches came with a general health caution from NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant. She said that despite there being no recent cases of community transmission, NSW residents should remain COVID-Safe.
“It is critical that people continue to come forward for testing and practice COVID-safe behaviour when out and about and catching up with family and friends,” Dr Chant said.
See here for our recent update on COVID rules in other states in Australia.