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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 04 Hansard (Tuesday, 20 April 2021) . . Page.. 814 ..

thank all those who are continuing to work together in delivering this important initiative to fast track the recovery of the public health system.

In line with the ACT’s positive situation, the ACT has been operating under a new set of “COVID-normal” restrictions. The ACT’s cautious approach to the easing of restrictions throughout the pandemic has enabled us to remain in a strong position while also helping ACT businesses and the community to continue to move forward.

The use of the Check in CBR app became mandatory for restricted businesses and venues from 6 March 2021 and I am pleased to see the community support for this measure. This is important in our efforts to keep businesses and venues open with increased capacity, while ensuring ACT Health can quickly and accurately conduct contact tracing should there be a new COVID-19 case reported in the ACT.

In response to high compliance with the new COVID-normal restrictions and following a public health assessment and advice recently received from the AHPPC relating to density limits for restricted businesses and events, gathering restrictions, the ACT government announced that, from 14 April 2021, there would be further easing of restrictions.

Cinemas and movie theatres can sell seated tickets at 100 per cent capacity of each individual theatre, subject to having a COVID safety plan endorsed by the Chief Health Officer; otherwise cinemas and theatres must remain at a maximum 75 per cent capacity. Large indoor performance venues with fixed forward-facing and tiered seating can have events up to 100 per cent capacity, provided the events are ticketed and seated, and a COVID safety plan has been endorsed by the Chief Health Officer; otherwise they must remain at 75 per cent capacity. If venues can have more than one performance at the venue at the same time, the COVID safety plan must ensure that start, finish and interval times for these performances are staggered and there is appropriate cleaning, particularly of shared lobby and bathroom spaces. The COVID safe event protocol has been updated to provide advice to live music venues on how to safely host live music event and to seek an exemption for larger audiences.

With these latest conditions comes an increase in responsibility. It is essential that businesses and the wider ACT community continue to follow COVID safe practices, including staying home if unwell and getting tested with even the mildest of COVID-19 symptoms, practising good hand and respiratory hygiene, and checking in with the Check in CBR app for contact-tracing purposes.

I urge Canberrans to keep practising the COVID safe behaviours as we now move into the colder months towards winter, and to continue to follow the public health advice to help keep Canberra in a strong position. The cooperation of the community in following the public health advice is critical to our continued success.

As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve both here in Australia and across the world, the ACT government needs to be able to respond by implementing and enforcing public health directions to protect Canberrans. The Chief Health Officer regularly provides the ACT government with advice on the status of the COVID-19 emergency and the ACT’s public health situation. I have received the Chief Health

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