Breaking news: Government announcements on Coronavirus

 12 May 2020

Aquatics coronavirus update

As the Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic evolves, we will provide State and Federal Government updates as they happen so you have the latest information available to you in this changing situation.

Update 31 May

The State of Emergency in Victoria will be extended for another three weeks unti 11.59pm on 21 June to slow the spread of coronavirus and keep people safe as restrictions are cautiously eased across the state from tomorrow.

State of Emergency extended to slow the spread

Update 29 May

One of the key things that won’t change is working from home. If you’re currently working from home – you must keep working from home.

By working from home, we limit the number of people moving around – and we limit the spread of this virus.

To date, we’ve left the ins and the outs of how this will work to Victorians and their employers.

But going forward – and in light of new evidence indicating increased activity – the obligation for employers to keep their staff working from home will now be included in the Chief Health Officer’s directions.

Statement from the Premier Daniel Andrews

Update 15 May

Hundreds of extra cleaners will hit local streets across regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne in a four-week blitz to help slow the spread of coronavirus and support jobs.

The Victorian Government is creating short-term positions for 1,500 cleaners who will work across 10 regional and 26 suburban communities cleaning public infrastructure, retail centres and shopping strips to help build community confidence as the staged lifting of restrictions begins.

Workers will disinfect and wipe down external surfaces such as street benches, handrails and door handles, traffic light buttons, poles, bicycle stands and bins.

Cleaning blitz creates jobs, helps keep communities safe

Update 12 May

Victorian government school students will begin a phased return to classrooms before the end of May, following advice from Victoria’s Chief Health Officer that it is safe for the community to do so.

Since the beginning of Term 2, most children in Victoria have been learning remotely, limiting the number of people moving around our state every day to help slow the spread of coronavirus.

From Tuesday 26 May, all Prep, Grade 1 and Grade 2 students, specialist school students, as well as VCE and VCAL students will return to on-site learning at government schools.  The next fortnight, and a pupil free day at all schools on 25 May, will give staff, schools and families time to prepare for the change. Students in the broader year 3 to 10 cohort will continue to learn remotely until Tuesday 9 June, to give the Government and the Chief Health Officer time to monitor and evaluate the effects that the return to school by other year levels has on the increased movement of people and transmission within the community.

Getting our kids back into the classroom

Update 11 May

The State Government has announced today the first steps in lifting COVID-19 restrictions.

As we have worked to flatten the curve, we’ve been telling Victorians there’s only four reasons to be out: shopping for food and supplies, care and caregiving, exercise, and study or work – if you can’t do it from home.

From 11:59pm this Tuesday night, there’s now a fifth reason to leave home: visiting friends and family – with a maximum gathering of up to ten outdoors and having up to five visitors in your home.

We’re also able to make some changes to rules for some of the most significant gatherings in any of our lives: weddings will now be able to have ten guests and up to 20 people will be able to attend funerals held indoors and up to 30 if they’re outdoors.

More of the outdoor recreational activities that so many Victorians have been missing will also be allowed: walking groups, fishing, hiking – and yes, even a game of golf. These activities will be subject to physical distancing to help keep people safe.

These new restrictions and a renewed State of Emergency will be in place until 11:59pm on Sunday 31 May.

Statement from the Premier

Updated sport, recreational and cultural activities 

Update 11 May

Victorians are being urged to be alert and call out any early warning signs of family violence during the coronavirus pandemic in a new ad campaign from the Victorian Government and Respect Victoria.

Minister for Prevention of Family Violence Gabrielle Williams today launched Respect Each Other: ‘Call It Out’. The campaign reminds families, friends, neighbours and communities that we need to work together to prevent family violence during this challenging time – and call it out when we see it.

Calling out family violence during Coronavirus


Update 8 May

The National Cabinet met today 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.
The Chief Medical Officer Professor Brendan Murphy provided an update on the measures underway, the latest data and medical advice in relation to COVID-19

The National Cabinet finalised the three-step plan to gradually remove baseline restrictions and make Australia COVID-safe.

Update on Coronavirus and three step plan to make Australia COVID-safe

Transcript from Prime Minister's Press Conference

Roadmap to a COVID-safe Australia

Three Step Framework for a COVID-safe Australia


Update 6 May

The Victorian Government will support thousands more Victorians who have lost work due to coronavirus and ensure they are redeployed doing jobs our community needs to stay safe and rebuild from the pandemic.

Supporting thousands more workers during Coronavirus

Update 5 May

The National Cabinet met today 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.

Update on Coronavirus measures

Update 30 April

Six new mobile coronavirus testing sites across Melbourne will open today, as part of the Victorian Government’s blitz to test up to 100,000 people in two weeks.

The new sites located at Bunnings West Footscray, Pacific Werribee, Pacific Epping, Watergardens Town Centre, Westfield Fountain Gate and Bayside Shopping Centre in Frankston are due to begin conducting tests this morning.

It comes after four new mobile coronavirus testing sites opened yesterday at Chadstone, Doncaster, Highpoint and Northland shopping centres – bringing the total so far to 10.

Coronavirus testing expands at shopping centres

Update 20 April

The Department of Health and Human Services has released modelling on case numbers b efore and after distancing measures and restrictions and modelling that has informed the decision making.

Victoria's coronavirus modelling shows staying home saves lives

Update 16 April

 Prime Minister's Media Conference Coronavirus update

Having made some real progress over the past month in getting the virus under control, as reflected in the data that you have been seeing, and Professor Murphy will be taking you through some more of that data today, and also getting the key economic supports through programs like JobKeeper and Jobseeker out there and being implemented, our attention as a National Cabinet has now been turning to the road out, having worked through the road in, and that road to recovery on the other side.

New funding to fight Coronavirus, support jobs and set up the recovery

The Victorian Government will put aside an additional $24.5 billion in emergency funding to fight coronavirus, support jobs, and set Victoria up to recover from the pandemic over the next two years.

These funds will be sought – alongside the ordinary funding to keep paying wages for our vital healthcare workers and other public sector staff – in the supply bills to be introduced when the Parliament meets for an emergency sitting next Thursday.

Update 15 April

Emergency sitting of the Victorian Parliament

The Victorian Parliament will be recalled two weeks early for a one day emergency sitting on Thursday 23 April 2020 to pass vital legislation to assist the ongoing response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Supporting Tenants and Landlords through Coronavirus

The Victorian Government will bring urgent legislation to the Parliament in line with decisions of the National Cabinet to support tenants and landlords through the coronavirus pandemic by reforming residential and commercial tenancy laws.

Update 12 April

Surge funding helping our mental health system during crisis

The Victorian Government has announced a funding boost to support Victoria’s mental health system and ensure Victorians get the care they need, as demand for services spikes during the coronavirus crisis.

Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Mental Health Martin Foley today announced a $59.4 million package to help meet demand as Victorians reach out for help with stress, isolation and uncertainty.

State of Emergency extended

The State of Emergency in Victoria is being extended for another four weeks to give the Victorian Government the powers it needs to keep slowing the spread of coronavirus and save lives.

Premier Daniel Andrews announced today that the State of Emergency declared last month would be extended until midnight 11 May 2020 to continue the measures designed to ‘flatten the curve’ of coronavirus and give our health system the best chance of managing the virus. The State of Emergency was originally due to expire on 13 April.

Update 10 April

A safe place to escape family violence

The Victorian Government will ensure women and children escaping family violence have a safe place to go and the support they need during the coronavirus pandemic.

Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence Gabrielle Williams and Minister for Housing Richard Wynne today announced the Victorian Government will invest $40.2 million in crisis accommodation and specialist services for people suffering or at risk of family violence.

Safe places for the homeless to recover and isolate

The Victorian Government will use repurposed aged-care sites to provide self-isolation facilities for Victorians experiencing homelessness – helping them recover from coronavirus, or avoid infection in the first place.

Update 9 April

Councils granted extra time to resolve budgets

The Andrews Labor Government is ensuring councils can continue to focus on delivering for the communities they represent by extending the deadline for council budgets and annual reports.Local Government Minister Adem Somyurek has announced an extended deadline for 2020/21 Council budgets until 31 August and for annual reports to 30 November.

Update 21 March

Economic survival to support business and jobs

The Victorian Government will pump billions of dollars into the economy to help Victorian businesses and workers survive the devastating impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

Premier Daniel Andrews and Treasurer Tim Pallas today announced a $1.7 billion economic survival and jobs package, which has been developed following discussions at National Cabinet and complements the work of the Federal Government.

Update 19 March

Hotline for businesses dealing with COVID-19

The Andrews Labor Government today launched a hotline for businesses dealing with the significant challenges posed by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The pandemic is creating issues for businesses large and small who are facing a downturn in trade, bans on events and restrictions on indoor gatherings, as well as challenges in dealing with employee safety and entitlements.


Media releases:

Victorian Government

Federal Government






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