Victorians stranded in ‘extreme risk’ zones in New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory will soon have a pathway to return home, with the State Government today announcing an alteration to border crossing rules.
From 30 September, Victorians in ‘extreme risk’ zones, which includes Sydney, a number of regional hubs in NSW and Canberra, will be permitted to return home if they fit certain criteria.
They can only return if they have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine and can display a negative COVID-19 test 72 hours prior to leaving the ‘extreme risk’ zone.
Returnees will still have to complete 14 days of quarantine on arrival in Victoria, however they will be allowed to do that at home.
If those returning to Victoria have no safe place to quarantine on arrival, the state government will make arrangements to house them for the duration of the two weeks.
Unlike the home quarantine systems being trialed in New South Wales and South Australia, the two weeks will not be monitored by technology.
“We don’t think we need to do that,” Premier Daniel Andrews said.
“We think, however, given the number of cases that are here and the number of cases that are in New South Wales, the growing vaccination numbers and our proximity if you like to those double dose thresholds that this is proportionate and the right thing to do.
“That’s a big step forward. This has been a real inconvenience and a real challenge for those people and their families.”
The current ‘extreme risk’ zone rules will remain for Victorians who aren’t fully vaccinated, meaning they can still apply for an exemption to enter the state under the existing limited criteria.
The changes come as Victoria reported a new daily record for locally acquired COVID-19 infections today, with 766 new cases confirmed today and four deaths.
Updated at 11.53am AEST on 23 September 2021.
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