QLD COVID-19 UPDATE

17 December 2021

Face masks will become mandatory in shops and retail centres, hospitals, aged care facilities, public transport and rideshare vehicles across the state from 1am tomorrow (Saturday 18 December). For other indoor settings, masks are not mandatory but are recommended, even where only vaccinated people can attend.

Wearing masks will help slow the spread of the virus and allow more people to get their vaccinations, including vulnerable people and healthcare workers who are due to get their third dose. This mandate will be revised once Queensland is 90 per cent fully vaccinated.

Support for small business

With the incoming mask mandate and hospitality and entertainment businesses now following the Public Health and Social Measures linked to vaccination status Direction, additional information, resources and support is available to businesses.

Queensland Health has advice for workplaces to prepare for and manage COVID-19.

The requirements for close and casual contacts will change from 1 January 2022, with testing and quarantine eased for vaccinated people. When these changes take effect, it will be easier for businesses to understand and plan for what will happen if their workplace becomes an exposure site. There is a four-step procedure for owners which includes:

  • Step 1: Determine if your staff had contact with the COVID-19 positive person within their infectious period
  • Step 2: Determine the duration of contact
  • Step 3: Determine the proximity of contact
  • Step 4: Queensland Health formal risk assessment
    More information is available on the Queensland Health website.

A free COVID Safe for Business course is available from TAFE Queensland, to help businesses and their staff to manage the entry of customers, including checking their vaccination status.

Download signage to display so customers are clear on the vaccination requirements before they enter.

11 December 2021

From 1 January 2022, there will be changes to how contact with a COVID-19 case is managed. Requirements will ease for vaccinated people.

These changes are detailed in the Managing the risk for COVID-19 exposures in businesses and venues plan.

This guidance will help businesses plan and manage situations where COVID-19 positive people have been in their business or venue.

From 1 January 2022 different requirements will come into effect for casual contacts and vaccinated and unvaccinated close contacts.

Access the details of these requirements on the Queensland Health website.

From 1 January 2022 businesses or venues listed as exposure sites are extremely unlikely to be closed when a positive case is detected and will be able to undertake routine cleaning to minimise disruption.

For the rest of this year businesses can continue operating as they are now. If your business is confirmed as an exposure venue, you may have to close for cleaning, and some staff may need to quarantine. Once that cleaning is complete the business can re-open. Current requirements are available here.

Businesses can continue to access the COVID-19 cleaning rebate to help cover professional cleaning expenses. Find out more here.

Support for businesses to manage the new public health measures is available from the Business Queensland website.

Work is now underway to add information about managing COVID-19 contacts to the COVID Safe For Business online training developed by TAFE Queensland.

Businesses are encouraged to ensure customers are using the Check In App when entering their premises to assist future contact tracing efforts.

8 December 2021

Queensland Health has released the new Public Health and Social Measures linked to vaccination status Direction outlining the rules coming into effect for businesses and Queenslanders from 17 December 2021.

From 17 December, there will be no capacity restrictions on non-essential leisure businesses that are only permitted to allow fully vaccinated people, including:

  • hospitality venues such as pubs, clubs, taverns, bars, restaurants, cafes and fast food outlets
  • indoor entertainment venues such as nightclubs, live music venues, karaoke bars, concerts, theatres or cinemas, casinos
  • outdoor entertainment activities such as sporting stadiums or theme parks
  • festivals – either indoor or outdoor – such as musical festivals, folk festivals or arts festivals
  • activities – either indoor or outdoor – such as convention centres and showgrounds, marathons and fetes
  • Queensland Government owned galleries, museums or libraries.

These businesses will need to display signage clearly outlining the requirement to be vaccinated to enter the premises and use best efforts to ask for evidence of vaccination from customers at the time of check-in or at the point of sale/service. Support for businesses to manage these requirements is available here.

A free, online training course developed by TAFE Queensland is now available to help businesses implement the new measures and manage the entry of customers and visitors, including checking their vaccination status. Register for the course here.

Unvaccinated people will still be able to access essential services and activities, such as retail outlets, places of worship and public transport.

Essential businesses can also voluntarily elect to adopt these measures if they believe it best suits their business needs and customer expectations. However, for some businesses, capacity restrictions will still remain. A list of the requirements for different types of businesses is included in the new public health direction.

Changes to Queensland’s border restrictions

From 1am AEST Monday 13 December 2021, Queensland’s border restrictions will ease further for fully vaccinated residents and visitors. For more information visit the Queensland Health website.

30 November 2021

From 17 December 2021, restrictions will ease for many businesses and fully vaccinated Queenslanders. These new measures will help to unite families, support our business community and keep all of us safe.

Non-essential leisure businesses – hospitality and entertainment venues – that are only allowed to permit entry to vaccinated staff and patrons, will no longer need to follow capacity restrictions.

To manage the new measures these businesses will need to:

  • display the vaccination rules at the business premises
  • use best efforts to ask for evidence of vaccination from customers at the time of check-in (this is a legal requirement) through one of the following:
  • the Check in Qld app
  • an immunisation history statement
  • a COVID-19 vaccination digital certificate
  • if a customer cannot or refuses to provide evidence, ask the person to leave the premises
  • if the person refuses to the leave the premises, call the police.
  • Essential businesses can also voluntarily elect to adopt these measures if they believe it best suits their business needs and customer expectations.

Queenslanders can now link their COVID-19 vaccination certificate to the Check In Qld app. This means customers can check in and show they are fully vaccinated, all through the app.

The Queensland Government has been working closely with industry bodies to deliver a range of resources including signage to support businesses to manage entry of patrons under the new measures.

Signage for businesses indicating vaccination requirements is now available from the Business Queensland website.

Frequently asked questions are available from the Queensland Health website which are being updated regularly to provide additional clarification.

In partnership with TAFE Queensland, work is also underway to provide free online training resources for businesses to help them manage the entry of customers, including checking their vaccination status. The training will include a module on how to de-escalate difficult customers and guidance for essential businesses to make decisions whether to voluntarily elect to adopt these measures. These resources will be available from 1 December from the TAFE Queensland website.

A campaign is currently underway that highlights the importance of treating businesses and their staff with respect.

For access to the latest information and support visit the Business Queensland website.