Thursday, August 6.

The Victorian Government has announced significant changes to the way we live and work in Victoria to slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Stage 4 restrictions are now in place across metropolitan Melbourne and from 11:59pm this evening, 5 August, Stage 3 restrictions will apply throughout regional Victoria. For the latest information on restrictions in Victoria, visit the DHHS website.

The Government has also announced further changes to the way we work. Some industries will continue to operate, while others will operate under different conditions or will be closed from 11.59pm Wednesday 5 August. A detailed list of how this applies to different businesses can be found here. Under Stage 4 restrictions in Melbourne, workplaces that remain open must have a COVID Safe Plan in place (unless you are a small business with fewer than five employees), so please familiarise yourself with these requirements via the Business Victoria website.

And from 11:59pm on Wednesday 5 August, employers in Melbourne that require their staff to attend a work site must issue a worker permit to their employees. These are all critically important measures to reduce the movement of people and protect lives and livelihoods.

There’s no doubt the next six weeks are going to be especially tough for the tourism industry, which has been one of the hardest hit sectors since the start of this pandemic. Many businesses have been forced to pivot, and pivot again. Some have been forced to make difficult decisions about their businesses, and their futures. It is an incredibly challenging time.

To find out what support may be available for your business, please visit the Business Victoria website. There is also a hotline – 13 22 15 seven days a week – to help answer your questions about what these restrictions might mean for your business.

The Business Victoria website has has a free mentoring program, which pairs business owners with someone who can help them adapt their current business strategy to survive the impacts of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Through Upskill My Business, business owners can gain practical skills from the state’s top education providers and industry experts – to set you up for a strong recovery.

We also encourage you to discuss your situation with your accountant and financial institution, to help shore up finances while these restrictions are in place.At Visit Victoria, we are working hard to support the industry through this time. In the immediate term, our team is focused on keeping Victoria front of mind as a travel destination for the future and encouraging people to buy your products and experiences online.

We’re also working closely with the Victorian Government, VTIC, the Regional Tourism Boards and industry to ensure the sector is supported and we’re planning for recovery. As the has Premier said, this will be hard and these are heartbreaking decisions. But we all need to play our part and make some big sacrifices to keep ourselves and each other safe.

Take care.

Kind regards,

Brendan McClements
CEO, Visit Victoria