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Timeline of Significant Developments

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12 May 2020

Physical distancing measures:  Measures are still in place across Australia. However, some states are revising restrictions on public gatherings. Check State and Territory websites for the rules where you live.

View further information HERE

8 May 2020

Three-step plan announced to remove restrictions: A three-step plan has been announced to gradually remove restrictions and make Australia COVID-safe. The National Cabinet met to further discuss options for easing restrictions over the coming months, helping prepare Australians to go back to work in a COVID-19 safe environment and getting the economy back to a more sustainable level. National Cabinet will meet again on Friday 15 May 2020.

View further information HERE

5 May 2020

Trans-Tasman COVID-Safe Travel Zone planning announced: Prime Ministers Jacinda Ardern and Scott Morrison agreed to commence work on a trans-Tasman COVID-safe travel zone – which will propose to ease travel restrictions between Australia and New Zealand. Such an arrangement would be put in place once it is safe to do so and necessary health, transport and other protocols had been developed and met, to ensure the protection of public health.

View further information HERE

Draft Code of Conduct for visitations to residents in aged care: The Australian Government is providing an additional $205 million in specific COVID-19 aged care funding and has released a draft Code of Conduct for visitations to residents in aged care.

View further information HERE

24 April 2020

National COVID-19 Safe Workplace Principles Introduced: The National Cabinet agreed to the National COVID-19 Safe Workplace Principles (of which there are 10) to be applied to all workplaces across Australia (subject to Government measures).

In conjunction with the 10 Principles, Safe Work Australia has developed nationally-consistent work health and safety guidance on COVID-19 – which is aimed at assisting employers to minimise the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in workplaces and to help limit the spread.

View further information HERE

NSW enacts legislation giving effect to the National Code of Conduct for commercial tenancies: NSW Parliament has enacted the Retail and Other Commercial Leases (COVID-19) Regulation 2020 (NSW) to provide relief measures for certain retail and commercial leases, endorsing the Federal Government’s National Cabinet’s Code of Conduct (released on 7 April 2020).

View further information HERE

17 April 2020

Domestic Aviation Network $165M Guarantee: The Federal Government has underwritten the cost (up to an initial $165M) of Qantas and Virgin Australia Groups domestic aviation network servicing the most critical metropolitan and regional routes (including Albury, Alice Springs, Coffs Harbour, Dubbo, Kalgoolie, Mildura, Port Lincoln, Rockhampton, Tamworth, Townsville and Wagga Wagga).

View further information HERE

12 April 2020

Higher Education Relief Package: The Higher Education Relief Package has been announced to support workers displaced by the COVID-19 crisis to upskill or retrain, and support universities and other higher education providers to continue teaching.

View further information HERE

9 April 2020

JobKeeper Payment Details: The Government has released more information concerning the $130 billion JobKeeper payment to help keep more Australians in jobs and support businesses affected by the significant economic impact caused by the Coronavirus.

View further information HERE

Cyber Crime: The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) has observed an increase in COVID-19 themed malicious cyber activity. We are all encouraged to remain vigilant and maintain strong cyber security practices during this time.

View further information HERE

7 April 2020

Commercial Tenancies – Code of Conduct: The National Cabinet has agreed that states and territories will implement a mandatory Code of Conduct for commercial tenancies. This Code sets out the good faith leasing principles to apply to certain commercial tenancies. Each state and territory will be responsible for enacting legislation to govern the principles set out in the Code.

View further information HERE

Jobs Hub Launched: The Government has launched a new Jobs Hub to help Australians find work during the Coronavirus pandemic, advertising the latest vacancies from businesses across Australia.

View further information HERE

2 April 2020

Early Childhood Education and Care Relief Package Announced: This package gives families much-needed fee relief while supporting child care services to keep their doors open and employees in their job.

View further information HERE

Wage Subsidy Registrations Opened: Registrations are open for small businesses, and other eligible employers, to apply for a wage subsidy of 50 per cent of the apprentice’s or trainee’s wage from 1 January 2020 to 30 September 2020.

View further information HERE

31 March 2020

Initial $130B JobKeeper Package Announced: The Government made an initial announcement regarding a $130 billion JobKeeper Payment to keep more Australians in jobs and support businesses affected by the Coronavirus.

View further information above in 9 April post.

30 March 2020

Rental Evictions Moratorium: The Federal Government announced that evictions will be put in hold for six months by the states and territories. Landlords and renters are encouraged to talk about short term agreements.

Further information to follow in subsequent weeks.

Closure of various public, commercial and retail places: Announced that pubs, licensed clubs and hotels (excluding accommodation), gyms, skateparks, indoor sporting venues, cinemas, beauty salons, play centres and outside playgrounds, places of worship and other public places must be closed. Each state and territory has enacted their own set of restrictions to apply.

29 March 2020

$1.1B Safety Net Package: A safety net package of $1.1billion was announced by the Government to expand mental health and tele-health services, increase domestic violence services and provide more emergency food relief.

View further information HERE

25 March 2020

Debt Relief Measures: Changes to the Commonwealth bankruptcy laws introduced to provide immediate relief for people facing financial difficulty including six month temporary debt protection, changes to bankruptcy notices and impacts to people who are currently bankrupt.

View further information HERE

20 March 2020

Restrictions on borders and public gatherings: Government announces restrictions on travel, public gatherings and social distancing.

View further information HERE

11 March 2020

Pandemic Declared: World Health Organization (WHO) on March 11 declared COVID-19 a pandemic – being the global spread of a new disease (COVID-19).

View further information HERE

30 January 2020

Public Health Emergency Declared: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was declared a public health emergency of international concern by the World Health Organisation