Regional NSW LGA back in lockdown after COVID-19 case; three-week vaccine blitz starts in Melbourne’s north and west：
The federal government is looking to rely on new digital border pass technology to remove a ban on Australians leaving the country. The Digital Passenger Declaration will apply to all travellers entering the country and will be introduced within months after international IT firm Accenture was awarded the tender. It will collect personal information including passengers’ vaccination status up to 72 hours before boarding and provide the digital authority for vaccinated Australians to travel.
The country’s COVID-19 vaccination program has been opened to include those aged between 12 and 15.
NSW reported 1257 new local coronavirus cases and seven deaths. Authorities announced the Yass Valley Council local government area in the NSW Southern Tablelands will be placed back into a two-week lockdown after a case of COVID-19 was confirmed in the area. Earlier, Premier Gladys Berejiklian – who, in an abrupt about-face appeared at a press conference in Sydney – said there had been a “stablisation” of COVID-19 cases in some western and south-west Sydney suburbs, although these areas still account for more than half of cases. About a third of residents at a Waterloo aged care home for vulnerable men are now among people in the state who have tested positive for COVID-19.
Victoria recorded 473 new cases of coronavirus in the community, with authorities warning tea rooms are “probably the most dangerous place” for transmission of the virus. The state is on track to reach its 70 per cent first-dose target on Friday, ahead of the previously expected date of September 23. A stoush between the state and federal governments rolled on, with Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley adamant authorities were not told they would receive an additional 400,000 COVID-19 vaccines before Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s announcement on Sunday.
The principal of a Melbourne independent school that repeatedly invited families to send their children to class during lockdowns was defiant about the dangers of coronavirus to his students. Tim Berryman said about 50 per cent of Fitzroy Community School’s students had been attending classes, and argued children’s voices had been lost in the debate about protecting them. According to authorities, there are now 29 active cases and 82 close contacts associated with the Fitzroy Community School outbreak.
Queensland reported two new local COVID-19 cases linked to the Sunnybank cluster, but authorities believe the situation there is still in hand, winding back some restrictions on visits to vulnerable facilities.
And elsewhere across the country, the ACT recorded 13 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19, at least 10 of whom were in the community while infectious. Western Australia reported no new locally acquired COVID cases, along with Tasmania, South Australia and the Northern Territory.