MEA has supported the Victorian Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) and tourism industry
associations in calling on the Victorian Government to re-open Victoria’s visitor economy by
using safe and staged processes as have been implemented in other states.
Industry leaders have undertaken a detailed review of gradual re-openings underway in NSW, SA and Queensland, and have put forward an alternative roadmap for Victoria to allow business to resume operations under strict safety controls from November 2020.
The events sector in Victoria currently does not have an established roadmap towards its
recovery, which is having a devastating impact on businesses and jobs.
Within the industry’s proposed framework:
- Indoor dining would be permitted at the next easing of restrictions with a cap of 20 people seated indoors per space, with up to two spaces per venue (for a maximum of 40 customers), under the one person per four square metre rule. If case numbers and type remain controlled, the next goal would be to move to one person per two square metres, and then to ultimately remove caps. Cleaning, signage and record keeping requirements would consistently apply. Large scale venues seating 100+ would be able to negotiate reasonable caps within density quotient requirements.
- Business events would operate with up to 50 people from 30 October, including venue staff, hosts and delegates, subject to the one person per four square metre rule, and subject to the business registering as COVID Safe and having an approved COVID Safe Plan. If case numbers and type remain controlled, the goal would be to increase the cap to 100 by 1 December and move to one person per 2 square metre rule on 1 January.
- Open-air attractions and outdoor venues would operate subject to the one person per four square metre rule within the expanse of their total footprint and subject to the business registering as COVID Safe and having an approved COVIDSafe Plan. As in other states, a family bubble would count as one within the patron cap limitations (i.e. one per four square metre). This would allow operations like helicopters, hot air balloons and commercial tour vehicles to operate and make outdoor adventure boat trips viable.
The continued uncertainty impacts the confidence in planning and conducting events for the remainder of 2020 and into 2021 and Victoria is seeing business move to other states, revert to virtual or cancel. The industry needs a clear way forward and the time frames to do so need to be escalated.