Restrictions on movement

To stop the spread of coronavirus, the Queensland Government has issued a series of Public Health Directions outlining residents' obligations. These include:

  • staying home, going out and moving around Queensland. (Refer to the Movement and Gathering direction for more)
  • business and activities
  • border restrictions including remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities

Penalties apply for breaching these directions. You can seek clarification, ask for exemptions, or get answers to your questions from Queensland Health via their online form or by emailing healthdirections@health.qld.gov.au.

Easing of restrictions

The Queensland Government's step-down approach to eased restrictions contains staged plans. Effective noon on 1 June 2020, the following is allowed within the Cairns Regional Council local government area:

Gatherings of a maximum of 20 people are allowed:

  • In homes
  • Non-contact indoor and outdoor sport
  • Personal training, gyms, health clubs and yoga studios
  • Pools (indoor, outdoor)
  • Community sports clubs
  • Parks, playgrounds, skate parks and green gyms
  • Libraries
  • Hiking, camping and other recreational activities in national parks
  • Places of worship and religious ceremonies
  • Weddings
  • Funerals for up 50 people

Unlimited travel, including overnight or multi-night stays, within Queensland (except restricted or biosecurity areas), is also allowed.

The following businesses can operate with 20 people, provided 4m2 per person can be maintained, and where specified COVID-19 safe plans/checklists are in place:

  • Open homes and auctions
  • Indoor cinemas
  • Outdoor amusement parks, tourism experiences, zoos and arcades
  • Concert venues, theatres, arenas, auditoriums and stadiums
  • Beauty therapy, nail salons, tanning, tattoo parlours and spas

Restaurants, pubs, clubs, cafes, hotels and casinos (no gaming) can have 20 patrons per room or defined area (indoors and outdoors) for dining in or seated drinks.

More information

Travel restrictions to remote communities

The Queensland Government has announced a Roadmap to easing restrictions for Queensland's remote communities.

Under Stage 1 residents returning to country may be able to quarantine for 14 days in their community. This is determined by individual councils.

More information on travel restrictions is available on the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnership (DATSIP) website.

If you are a resident of the following communities and require information on returning home please contact your local Council, details below:

Staying home, movement and gatherings

Eased restrictions from 11 May:

People can leave their principal place of residence to attend:

  • community kindergarten, Prep, Year 1, Year 11 or Year 12 of schooling;
  • Years 2 to 10 of schooling if schooling cannot reasonably be provided from home e.g. children of essential workers.

Eased restrictions effective from 10 May:

  • you are allowed to leave your house to visit someone else at their house.  Households can have two visitors from the same or different households, or up to five visitors from the same household, regardless of how many people live there.
  • Travel advice regarding Mother's Day is contained in the Queensland Government's A message to Queenslanders this Mother's Day

Eased restrictions effective from 2 May:

Residents may travel for recreation purposes within a 50km radius of their principal place of residence. People may conduct these activities with members of their immediate household (people who normally live together) or as an individual with one other person.

Activities that will be permitted include:

  • Go for a picnic (as a household or as an individual with friend)
  • Visit a national park
  • Drive a car, ride a motorbike, jet ski, go boating or other vehicle for pleasure
  • Teach someone in your household how to drive
  • Shop for non-essentials as long as you maintain a 1.5 metre distance

Essential goods and services

You are able to leave the house to obtain essential goods and services, which is limited to those goods and services needed for the necessities of life and operation of our society.

  • To obtain essential goods and services
  • Receive medical treatment, health care or social services including employment services, domestic and family violence services, and child protection services
  • Exercise (with one other person, or members of your family)
  • Do work or volunteering that is essential and cannot be done from home (this is any type of work that is not restricted under the latest ‘non-essential business activity and undertaking closure’ direction)
  • Visit another person’s house (visitor limits apply)
  • Visit a terminally ill relative or attend a funeral (funeral attendance limits apply)
  • Assist, care for or support immediate family members
  • Attend Court or tribunal or comply with a Court or tribunal order
  • Attend a childcare facility, school, university, or other educational institution to receive instruction that is not possible to receive at home
  • Assist with an investigation by police or other law enforcement authority
  • All shared custody arrangements of children under 18 years of age, whether informal or court-ordered, can continue as normal. You are allowed to leave the house to take children from one parent’s home to the other parent’s home
  • To avoid illness, injury or the risk of harm
  • To comply with directions of a government agency
  • To donate blood

If you need to go out, maintain a 1.5m distance from other people wherever practical.

People in the following at-risk groups are encouraged to stay home as much as practical for their own protection. It is also strongly discouraged to visit people in these groups.

  • People aged 70 or over
  • People aged 60 or over with a chronic illness
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 50 with a chronic illness

More information

Penalties

The following fines apply to breaches of home quarantine and social distancing breaches.

If a person does not comply with quarantine directions, penalties of up to $13,345 for individuals and $66,672.50 for corporations may apply.

Police can also issue on the spot fines of $1334.50 for individuals and $6,672.50 for corporations which fail to abide by the health directions.

Home Medicines Service

The Home Medicines Service is a temporary program for people in home isolation and for vulnerable patient groups who wish to limit their potential exposure to novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the community. It provides home delivery of medicines from any pharmacy approved to dispense and supply Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (RPBS) medicines.

You can order other items to be delivered to you from the pharmacy, if it is part of the same order.  This includes over-the-counter painkillers, tissues and hand sanitizers - but these must be combined in a single delivery with one or more PBS/RPBS medicines.

The Home Medicines Service provides for one, no-cost delivery per month.  If you need more than one delivery per month, your pharmacy may charge a fee.

  • Speak directly to your pharmacist about ordering your medicines, delivery times, urgent medicine needs and any other questions you have about the Home Medicines Service.
  • Visit the Pharmacy Programs Administrator website for more on the Home Medicines Service including eligibility and consent.

Queensland border closure

To slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the Queensland Government has tightened restricted entry into Queensland.

Only Queensland residents and those considered an ‘exempt person’ are allowed to cross the border by air, sea, rail or road.

Exempt persons include:

  • National/state security
  • Essential health services
  • Emergency services
  • Transport of goods or freight by land, sea or air, including food
  • Critical maintenance/repair to critical infrastructure in Queensland
  • Construction, mining/energy/agribusinesses (and see below for specific requirements for FIFO workers in these sectors)
  • Federal, state or local government workers or contractors who are required to enter to Queensland to work

Exempt persons must apply for a Queensland Border Pass but do not need to self quarantine, unless they have been to a designated hot spot.

Residents moving permanently to Queensland are also exempt, but must self-quarantine for 14 days.

Residents who have been overseas in the past 14 days must self-quarantine.

Compassionate exemptions

Queensland also allows a general compassionate grounds exemption, as well as specific exemptions for those living outside of Queensland who:

  • Are carers/relatives of dependant individuals in Queensland
  • Need to obtain essential medical treatment including visiting terminally ill relatives in Queensland
  • Are interstate boarding school students where school is closed
  • Are required to comply with the law to travel to Queensland (for example, Family Court, parole/bail conditions etc.)

Hot spots

Residents and exempt persons need to self-quarantine for 14 days if they have been to a designated hot spot unless they were in the hot spot for:

  • work
  • obtain essential medical treatment
  • obtain life-preserving services
  • visit a dying relative
  • attend a funeral
  • attend court or comply with a court order
  • assist in a law enforcement investigation
  • comply with child custody or access arrangements
  • to escape a risk of domestic and family violence or harm

The following New South Wales Local Government Ares have been declared hot spots:

  • Blacktown
  • Cantebury-Bankstown
  • Central Coast
  • Cumberland
  • Inner West
  • Ku-ring-gai
  • Northern Beaches
  • Randwick
  • Ryde
  • Sutherland Shire
  • Sydney
  • Waverley
  • Woolahra

FIFO workers

Restrictions preventing interstate FIFO workers (except for certain positions in certain resource industries) apply from 11.59pm Saturday 4 April 2020, see Read more on the Queensland Government website below.

Self isolation

If you have been overseas in the past 14 days and feel unwell, contact your doctor immediately.

Self-isolation means you must stay at home for 14 days. You must self-isolate if you:

  • have coronavirus
  • have been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus
  • arrived in Australia after midnight on 15 March 2020.

Self isolation means staying at home or in your hotel room for 14 days. This is to prevent the possible spread of the virus to other people.  This means you:

  • Do not leave your home/hotel unless it is an emergency
  • Do not go to public places such as work or shopping centres
  • Do not let visitors in - only people who usually live with you should be in your home.

If you are well, there is no need to wear surgical masks inside.

If you are isolating at home, ask others who are not in isolation to get food and necessities for you.

If you are in a hotel you must avoid contact with other guests or staff.

If you need assistance, such as delivery of food and essential items, while in self isolation you can call the Community Recovery Hotline 1800 173 349 operated by the Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors.  You may also be eligible to access the Home Medicines Service.

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Last updated: 04 June 2020