The Victorian Government has introduced new state-wide restrictions effective from 11.59pm on 3 February 2021. The restrictions are:

  • The limit on the number of people gathering in a household will be reduced from 30 to 15, meaning the household members plus 15 visitors (excluding children under 12 months of age).
  • Masks will be mandatory in public indoor spaces. If you have visitors in your home, it is strongly recommended that masks are worn during the visit. Masks must be worn in indoor public spaces apart from when eating or drinking. If you are planning to leave your home – take a mask.
  • The 75 percent‘ return to work’ cap in both public and private sectors scheduled for Monday 8 February will be paused and the current cap of 50% will remain in place.

The SSAA developed a storage specific COVID Safe Plan that members may wish to implement into their everyday business practices.

Available for download from the Members Only section on our website – The Australian SSAA COVID Risk Management Plan

Your COVID Safe Plan helps protect your workers, customers and visitors and provides guidance on what to do in the event of a suspected or confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace.

Your COVID Safe Plan must set out:

  • Your actions to help prevent the introduction of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace
  • The level of face-covering or personal protective equipment (PPE) required for your workforce
  • How you will prepare for, and respond to, a suspected or confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace

Key points to remember

Adhere to the facility COVID Safe Plan.

Everyone must wear a mask when they leave home unless an exception applies.

Can you refuse entry to your facility if a storer is not wearing a mask?

A Facility has an obligation of safety to its staff and storers and is permitted to do what it believes is reasonably required to protect their health and safety. The requirement to wear a face-covering has been made by the Western Australian Government to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

Accordingly, a Facility can legally refuse access to people not wearing face coverings, unless one of the following exemptions applies:

  • the person is an infant or a child under 12.
  • the person has a physical or mental illness or disability, which makes wearing a face mask unsuitable.
  • the person is communicating with someone who is deaf or hard of hearing.
  • the person is engaging in strenuous physical exercise (this could extend to moving goods in and out of a unit); or
  • the person is consuming food, drink, or medicine.

Storers who are refused access do not have grounds to contest the Facility’s decision. A right not to be discriminated against based on not wearing a mask does not exist and a Storer’s refusal to wear a mask does not qualify as an act demonstrating freedom of political communication under the Australian Constitution.

If any Facility owner or member of staff is concerned about their well-being during any discussion with a storer not wearing a mask, they should immediately contact local police.