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Are masks compulsory in NSW? Here’s what you need to know

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With seven new local cases recorded in NSW as of 2 January, new restrictions have been announced by the NSW government.

Residents of Greater Sydney (including Wollongong, Central Coast and Blue Mountains, and the southern half of the Northern Beaches) will now be fined $200 for not wearing masks in certain indoor spaces.

The indoor spaces include:

  • Shopping centres
  • Entertainment venues
  • Public transport
  • Places of worship
  • Hair and beauty salons
  • Gaming establishments

Children under 12 are exempt from these rules, but strongly encouraged to wear masks. On the spot fines will be implemented from Monday, 4 January 2021.

These restrictions do not apply to regional NSW.

women wearing covid masks
Source: Unsplash

Additional restrictions

The NSW government has also announced new restrictions on public gatherings.

  • Gym classes can have a maximum of 30 people
  • Religious services, places of worship, weddings and funerals can have a maximum of 100 people, maintaining 1 person per 4 square metres
  • Controlled outdoors gatherings can have a maximum of 2,000 people
  • Protests and other outdoor performances can have a maximum of 500 people
  • Night clubs are not permitted 

Meanwhile, the following restrictions remain in place for the northern zone of the Northern Beaches till 9 January 2021:

  • No visitors at home
  • Only 5 people may gather outdoors for exercise of recreation, from within the same zone
  • Non-essential businesses remain closed

Residents outside of the mentioned areas are still encouraged to practice physical distancing, wear masks, and limit social interactions. They are also encouraged to get tested even with mild symptoms.

mohammed siraj indian cricket team
Celebrations after Siraj bowled out Nathan Lyon at MCG. Source: Twitter

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What about the Test match at SCG?

Although described as an “evolving situation”, the Test match between Australia and India is still scheduled to go ahead with crowds on 7 January.

NSW chief health officer, Dr Kerry Chant had stated that a 50 per capacity crowd was still possible.

“We will be handing out masks on public transport going into the SCG, and advising people to wear masks when they are not physically at their seat,” she has been quoted as saying.

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