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Government bans mass gatherings across Australia

Article image for Government bans mass gatherings across Australia

The government will ban mass public gatherings of more than 500 people following updated advice from health authorities.

Australia’s Chief Medical Officer Dr Brendan Murphy provided the advice during a coronavirus COAG meeting with all state and federal leaders and public health officials in Sydney on Friday.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison addressed the media afterwards, confirming all non-essential mass gatherings will be banned from Monday.

“It has been recommended to us that we move to a position by Monday where we will be advising against organised, non-essential gatherings of persons of 500 people or greater.

“That, of course, doesn’t include schools, it doesn’t include university lectures, it doesn’t mean people getting on public transport or going to airports or things of that nature.

“These events that we’re seeking to advise against and restrict is for non-essential, organised gatherings of 500 persons or more.”

Click PLAY below to hear the PM’s address

Dr Murphy explained why the ban isn’t coming into place immediately, saying “there is no immediacy about this”.

“We are getting ahead of the curve. We think that by that time we’ll start to see a few more cases of community transmission.

“There is no immediacy about this but we need to get ahead of the curve and so the recommendation was Monday. The Premiers and the Prime Minister agreed with that.

“It wouldn’t have mattered if they’d made a decision one or two days either side. It was felt that was a reasonable time to progress”


NRL Chairman Peter V’Landys tells Deborah they will comply with the rule, if necessary, but hopes it has exemptions.

“We respect the chief medical officer’s decisions, however, I think they should look at it as a case to case basis.

“They should be doing the risk analysis because up in northern Queensland there hasn’t been one report of a coronavirus incident.

“They shouldn’t just have one rule for all.”

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview

Nine Political Editor Chris Uhlmann tells Deborah Knight the government has been following all recent health advice.

“That would mean every football game, every major theatre.”

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview



Image: Getty/Marco Di Lauro