Covid-19 Australia: October 14 Sydney’s Freedom Day as NSW’s roadmap out of lockdown is revealed | Daily Mail Online

October 14 is the day millions of Sydneysiders will be freed from lockdown and can return to pubs, clubs, hairdressers and more after almost four months under strict stay-at-home orders. 

Sydney residents who have had two Covid-19 vaccinations can, from that date, legally visit bars and clubs across the city under new government health orders, 2GB’s Ben Fordham reported on Tuesday morning.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has flagged mid-October – when it is expected the state will reach 70 per cent of the population fully vaccinated – as a potential ‘Freedom Day’. 

The government will not restore all individual freedoms, with many restrictions set to linger semi-permanently or until an ambitious 90 per cent double-vax rate is reached.

Under the terms of ‘Freedom Day’, those who are double jabbed will get access to hospitality venues and other businesses when they prove their full vaccination status using the Service NSW app.

However some Sydneysiders could get a head-start on the rest as a means of trialling the vaccination passport system before it is more widely rolled out.

October 14 will be Sydney’s official ‘Freedom Day’ when they can return to the city’s bars and clubs, 2GB’s Ben Fordham has revealed

Thousands of Sydneysiders though could enjoy a drink at the pub even earlier at the start of October as part of a new trial in highly-vaccinated suburbs with low Covid-19 case numbers (pictured, a group drinking in Sydney in March 2020)

Members of the Indigenous community are seen receiving a Covid-19 vaccine at a pop-up vaccination clinic in Redfern, Sydney

The Ku-ring-gai LGA on Sydney’s Upper North Shore (pictured) is also looking to be first in the door, reporting 24 active cases and 86.9 per cent of residents with one jab

NSW recorded 1,220 new locally-acquired cases of Covid-19 and eight deaths on Tuesday

WHICH SUBURBS COULD SOON ENJOY A POST-LOCKDOWN DRINK?

That trial meant residents of some  highly vaccinated Sydney suburbs could be enjoying eased restrictions in less than a month.

The NSW government has that warned residents living in Sydney’s Covid-ravaged west and southwest will miss out on the new trial as case numbers continue to climb in those areas. 

This is despite residents in those hotspots rushing to get vaccinated, with many of the suburbs well above the national average jab rate. 

One of the suburbs that could be selected for the trial is Mosman, with the suburb reporting only six active cases of the virus and more than 75 per cent of its residents single-dosed.

The Ku-ring-gai LGA on Sydney’s Upper North Shore is also looking to be first in the door, reporting 24 active cases and 86.9 per cent of residents with one jab. 

Residents who live in suburbs such as Roseville, St Ives, Wahroonga, Pymble, Lindfield and Turramurra could look forward to a night out in just a few weeks time. 

So too could fully vaccinated residents in postcodes like North Sydney, Hunters Hill and Gordon, where active cases of the virus remain low. 

John Green, the director of the Australian Hotels Association, said the trial will give the city’s pubs a good opportunity for testing the new vaccination technology and overcoming any teething problems with operating such a passport system. 

‘It just makes sense to put it into play, see how it works and then everyone benefits,’ Mr Green said. 

One of the lucky suburbs that could be selected for the government trial is Mosman (pictured) with the suburb reporting only six active cases of the virus and more than 75 per cent of its residents single-dosed

However, Opposition Leader Chris Minns has slammed the selective nature of the trial and argued it wasn’t fair that some residents got to enjoy the freedoms earlier than others. 

‘You can’t have a plan where one third of Sydney is under curfew but you can go out and get a rosè in the Northern Beaches and the North Shore, it’s just not fair,’ he said.  

Meanwhile, long-suffering residents in Sydney’s west and southwest remain under the toughest lockdown restrictions in the state, including a controversial curfew. 

Deputy Premier John Barilaro candidly disclosed that curfews did more bad than good, with no health advice to justify their use.

Despite surging vaccination rates in hotspot suburbs including Bankstown (pictured on Sunday), they are likely to miss out on new freedoms

Pubs will only be initially opened in postcodes where vaccination rates are high and case numbers are low (pictured, a Bondi resident seen shopping)

NEW FREEDOMS ANNOUNCED FOR DOUBLE-JABBED SYDNEYSIDERS

By mid-October fully-vaccinated Sydneysiders can expect to enjoy the following freedoms: 

*Pubs and restaurants will reopen for the fully-vaccinated in mid-October with a four square metre rule in place. 

*Hairdressers and barbers will reopen and vaccinated services in places of worship can be held with a four square metre rule. 

*Sporting crowds will be allowed to return to stadiums as long as they are fully-jabbed with limits on capacity. 

*Gatherings in households will also be permitted, as long as visitors have had two doses of a Covid vaccine with a cap on the number of guests.

Mr Barilaro argued the tough measure imposed on Western Sydney did little to reduce daily case numbers and has become a burden on residents’ mental health. 

Locked-down residents in 12 LGAs of concern in Greater Sydney are not permitted to leave their homes from 9pm-5am unless they are an authorised worker or involved in an emergency or need medical care. 

Premier Gladys Berejiklian initially rebuffed calls to enforce the tough measure on Sydneysiders but relented after daily case numbers began to skyrocket and compliance in some suburbs began to dwindle.

In spite of the doom and gloom, vaccination rates in Sydney’s Covid hotspots have begun to surpass the national average. 

Blacktown in Sydney’s west is leading the charge with an impressive 86 per cent of its residents jabbed with a single dose of a Covid vaccine. 

 Vaccination rates have rocketed in Sydney’s LGA hotspots (pictured, Bankstown on Sunday) as locals heed the call to get jabbed

Sporting crowds will be allowed to return to stadiums as long as they are fully-jabbed with capacity limits in mid-October (pictured, young fans during a Sydney Swans game in April)

Campbelltown closely followed with 82 per cent of residents single-dosed, with Parramatta at 81 per cent, Penrith at 79 per cent and Strathfield at 78 per cent.  

The high rates come as residents are afforded a glimpse at the state’s roadmap out of lockdowns following NSW hitting 70 per cent first-dose vaccination on Thursday. 

While the official plan has not been signed off on yet, government officials have said the highly-anticipated roadmap will be announced later this week.   

Pubs and restaurants will reopen for the fully-vaccinated in mid-October with a four square metre rule in place. 

Hairdressers and barbers will reopen and vaccinated services in places of worship can be held with a four square metre rule. 

Sporting crowds will be allowed to return to stadiums as long as they are fully jabbed with capacity limits. 

NSW is well on its way to reaching the 70 per cent fully-vaccinated target (pictured, a woman is vaccinated in Sydney’s Redfern)

Hairdressers and barbers are set to reopen in mid-October as well as vaccinated services in places of worship can be held with rules on social distancing (pictured, a woman gets her hair coloured in March)

Gatherings in households will also be permitted as long as visitors have had two doses of a Covid vaccine, with a cap on the number of guests.

Customer Service Minister Victor Dominello said he would work with the federal government to ensure residents could prove they were double-jabbed on the Service NSW app.  

‘Service NSW and Services Australia are currently finalising the details of the trial,’ Mr Dominello told NCA NewsWire.

‘Its broader application will be subject to the government’s reopening plan and the health orders.’

‘Anyone double-dosed will have all their freedoms back and be able to go shopping, dine in restaurants, and ‘do the things we’ve all been missing’, Ms Berejiklian said in relation to when 70 per cent of the state was fully vaccinated

Ms Berejiklian said hitting 70 per cent single doses was an ‘outstanding achievement’ but though there was relief for some Sydneysiders, lockdown would only end when 70 per cent of the state was fully vaccinated.

Those who have had both jabs will get all their freedoms back and be able to go shopping, dine in restaurants, and ‘do the things we’ve all been missing’, she said.

Then at 80 per cent, the premier said international travel will finally return after more than 18 months, and thousands of stranded Australians will be welcomed home.

Modelling suggests NSW will reach the 70 per cent double vaccination target by mid-October, and then residents will finally be afforded freedoms to visit the pub, restaurants and stadium events.

NSW is the first state in Australia to reach the 70 per cent first dose target and will likely be the first to reach the second dose target as well, with 40 per cent fully vaccinated as of Monday.

Last week, the premier encouraged businesses to dust off their Covid safety plans and ensure their employees were vaccinated in preparation for mid-October. 

‘That is certainly the date we’re working towards. Initially it was the end of October, but because everybody is coming forward at the rates we’re seeing people come forward, that could be as early as the middle of October,’ she said. 

Sydneysiders have been afforded a glimpse at the state’s roadmap out of lockdowns after the state hit 70 per cent first-dose vaccination on Thursday (patrons enjoy pizza in Bondi in May 2020)

Ms Berejiklian also promised further restrictions would ease for those living in Covid hotspots once it was safe to do so.

‘We know that between 70 per cent and 80 per cent of all cases are still coming from those areas,’ she said.

‘However, there are some councils we’re looking at to see if we can relieve those burdens or even part of councils. That’s ongoing work.’

It comes as healthcare workers across the state have been told to brace themselves for a surge in hospitalisations with daily infections to number more than 2,000. 

Modelling released by NSW Health on Monday revealed hospital intensive care units will be pushed to the brink as admissions are set to triple in October. 

However, Ms Berejiklian is still expected to announce an easing of some lockdown restrictions and assured residents ICU capacity could be expanded to 1,550 patients. 

‘We certainly don’t want to have to use all of those beds and staff because we know what pressure it will put on the system, but we want everybody to be reassured that the capacity is there,’ she said. 

Operating theatres will be converted to makeshift ICU units while each staff member will be responsible for an increased number of patients, the modelling stated. 

The report reiterated the importance of vaccinations in Covid hotspots and stated jabs in arms was more important than reducing the number of daily infections.  

Modelling suggests NSW will reach the 70 per cent double vaccination target by October 21, and then residents will finally be afforded freedoms to visit the pub, restaurants and stadium events (pictured, patrons at a restaurant in Sydney in March 2020)

NSW is the first state in Australia to reach the 70 per cent first dose target and will likely be the first to reach the second dose target as well (pictured, women in Richmond in June 2020)

On Sunday, NSW hit the halfway mark to 80 per cent double vaccination that will allow it to treat coronavirus like the flu, open state borders and international travel.

The premier offered an insight into what life will look like when that hits 70 per cent, indicating there would be density limits in hospitality venues and QR codes when businesses reopened.

Capacity limits on large events will be maintained to ensure compliance with social distancing requirements.

And, most importantly, once the 80 per cent double jab target is reached, NSW will ‘never have to do a statewide lockdown ever again’, the premier promised.

NSW recorded 1,220 new locally-acquired cases of Covid-19 and eight deaths on Tuesday. 

What are the four phases of opening up?

A. Vaccinate, prepare and pilot (from July 14)

Arrival caps cut in half to 3,035 a week; early, stringent and short lockdowns if outbreaks occur; trials of seven-day home quarantine for vaccinated arrivals in South Australia; medicare vaccination certificates available on apps like apple wallet   

B. Post vaccination phase (when 70 per cent are jabbed, expected late this year)

Lockdowns ‘less likely but possible’; vaccinated people face reduced restrictions; caps for unvaccinated arrivals increased; a larger cap for vaccinated arrivals with ‘reduced quarantine requirements’; capped entry for students and economic visa holders  

C. Consolidation phase (when 80 per cent are jabbed, time not announced)

Lifting all restrictions for outbound travel for vaccinated travellers; no caps for vaccinated arrivals; increased caps for students and visa holders; more travel bubbles being set up with countries such as Singapore; booster shots rolled out 

D. Final phase (percentage or time not announced)

Uncapped arrivals for vaccinated people without any quarantine and uncapped arrivals for unvaccinated people with testing before departure and on arrival 

This content was originally published here.