Families and community

Last Updated: 28 Sep 2020 2:41pm

Last update: 18 Nov 2020 9:29am

Aged care facility visitor restrictions

For detailed information about restrictions that will be in place from the start of Monday 26 October 2020, see the Direction No. 10 for Residential Aged Care Facilities

In Tasmania, visits to residential aged care facilities are permitted for people providing care and support, with the following restrictions:

  1. No more than two people can visit each resident at any time.
  2. Visits must take place in the resident’s room, outdoors, or in a non-communal area, as designated by the facility.
  3. Visitors must not have any symptoms of acute respiratory infection, including fever (higher than 37.5 degrees), signs of fever (eg chills, night sweats), cough, sore throat, runny nose, shortness of breath or loss of taste or smell.
  4. Unless an exemption has been granted (see below) visitors must not be in quarantine. That means they must not have:
    1. been in an area identified as medium or high-risk for COVID-19 in the previous 14 days
    2. had contact with anyone known to have COVID-19, or reasonably suspected of having COVID-19, within the previous 14 days (except as part of their employment while wearing effective personal protective equipment).
  5. All visitors must have had the 2020 influenza vaccine (see below).

Operators of aged care facilities must screen all people before they enter the premises. See the Staff/Visitor Screening Tool for Residential Care Services

Each resident may receive multiple visits each day, subject to each service’s policies.

The maximum duration of visits is subject to each service’s policies.

Children under the age of 16 years and visiting services such as hairdressers and allied health professionals may visit aged care facilities.

Residents may leave the facility, for example with family and friends.

Influenza vaccination

From 1 May 2020, you must have your 2020 influenza vaccination to work in or visit an aged care facility in Tasmania, unless you cannot safely have the vaccine for medical reasons. To be exempt from needing the vaccine, you will need  a certificate from a medical practitioner (GP or specialist) stating that you have a medical contra-indication to influenza vaccine.

The exception to this requirement is if you are entering the premises to provide emergency medical (including transport), emergency management or law enforcement services.

For more information, see Influenza vaccines in residential aged care settings FAQs.

Seeking exemptions to visit an aged care facility while in quarantine

The Director of Public Health can provide exemptions to  permit people in quarantine (ie travellers who have been directed to quarantine and close contacts of confirmed cases),  to visit aged care facilities on a case-by-case basis if the person seeking to visit the facility:

  • is well (no fever or symptoms of acute respiratory infection); and
  • is a significant person to a resident; and
  • seeks to provide end-of-life support to that resident.

For people arriving from medium or high-risk areas who have been directed to quarantine on arrival, an application for exemption to visit an aged care facility is in addition to G2G PASS and any exemption the person receives to travel to Tasmania and to leave quarantine for other reasons. ie, an application to visit an aged care facility while being in quarantine is a two-step process with two different Tasmanian Government agencies.

How to apply for exemption to visit an aged care facility while in quarantine

  1. Discuss your proposed visit with the manager of the residential aged care facility
  2. If the facility manager is supportive of your visit, request a letter of support naming you as the proposed visitor
  3. Request a letter from the resident’s treating doctor, certifying that the resident is nearing end-of-life
  4. Apply for exemption through the G2G website, at www.coronavirus.tas.gov.au/travellers-and-visitors/g2g-pass; select the category ‘Leaving isolation to enter an aged care facility’ and upload supporting information, including the letter of support from the facility and the letter from the resident’s doctor.

For people travelling to Tasmania:

  • Applications are assessed by Public Health Services from Monday to Friday in business hours. You are encouraged to apply at least three (3) days prior, but no more than 14 days, prior to you proposed travel date. In extraordinary circumstances, urgent applications will be considered. Please call the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 if your application is urgent.
  • Approval from Public Health Services to leave quarantine to visit an aged care facility is the first step. After Public Health Services has assessed your request to visit the facility, your application for a G2G pass will be assessed. If approved by both agencies, you will receive a G2G pass and a letter of approval from Public Health by email. If not approved, your G2G pass will be rejected.

For people already in Tasmania:

  • Applications are assessed by Public Health Services from Monday to Friday in business hours. Please call the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 if your application is urgent.
  • If exemption is granted, you will receive a letter of exemption by email to the email address provided in the G2G application. If exemption is not approved, you will be notified by email.

If you receive approval to visit the aged care facility, make sure you take your G2G pass and the letter from Public Health Services with you on your visit, as evidence that exemptions have been provided. Otherwise you will not be permitted to visit. You will also need to complete a screening form when you arrive. When you fill out the screening form, you must declare that you are in quarantine. You must also comply with any directions given by Public Health or staff of the facility, such as wearing a facemask.

For more information, call the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 or email covid.response@health.tas.gov.au

Last update: 04 Nov 2020 4:09pm

Your rights and responsibilities

Discrimination is against the law in Tasmania in a number of areas, including:

  • Employment (paid and unpaid work)
  • Providing goods and services
  • Education (schools and universities)
  • Accommodation, including rentals

Your rights during the pandemic

During the pandemic, and while various restrictions are in place, you have the right to live and work in a discrimination and harassment free environment.

You have the right not to be discriminated against because of your race, disability, family responsibilities and a number of other grounds.

Disability includes any medical condition, including coronavirus (COVID-19).

It is also against the law to treat someone less favourably because you think that they have COVID-19.

Examples of unlawful discrimination and prohibited conduct

  • Making racist comments towards people because of their race. Race includes a person’s skin colour, nationality, ethnic background and immigrant status.
  • Reducing someone’s hours or terminating someone’s employment because they have COVID-19, or have a family member who is in isolation, or have completed a period of quarantine due to suspected COVID-19.
  • Refusing to rent a property to someone because of their race, or because they have COVID-19.
  • Cancelling a rental contract/agreement because you think someone may get COVID-19 because that person is a health care worker.
  • Refusing to serve a customer because of their race, or because they are wearing a mask.
  • Not providing proper services or support to someone with disability when those services could be provided while COVID-19 restrictions are in place.
  • Not allowing family members to visit residents in aged care facilities and hospitals, or limiting visits in a way that is stricter than the current legal restrictions.
  • Not allowing an employee to work from home who is at higher risk of moderate to severe illness from COVID-19 or has family/caring responsibilities.

Refusing a person access to services, a business or premises on the basis of whether or not they have the COVIDSafe app installed on their mobile device is also unlawful.

Your responsibilities during the pandemic

  • You have a responsibility to follow all the latest public health advice and laws related to managing the pandemic.
  • You have a responsibility not to discriminate, engage in offensive, humiliating, insulting, intimidating or ridiculing conduct, or incite hatred towards people because of their race or presumed disability (including if you think they have COVID-19).

If you have any questions or would like to lodge a complaint, please contact Equal Opportunity Tasmania on 6165 7515 or 1300 305 062 or email office@equalopportunity.tas.gov.au

Last update: 02 Dec 2020 10:57am

Below are the restrictions that currently apply.



The areas where travellers have spent time prior to arriving in Tasmania determine the conditions for their entry into the State.

Areas are assessed as either lowmedium or high-risk dependent upon the number of COVID-19 cases or level of community transmission in those areas, and subject to Public Health advice.

quarantine fee is in place for people required to quarantine in government-designated accommodation (exemptions apply).

For more information visit Coming to Tasmania.

The number of people permitted at businesses/activities (other than households) is determined by the density of the area, up to a maximum of:

  • 250 people for an undivided space in an indoor premises; and
  • 1,000 people in an undivided space outdoors.

The maximum density limit is one person per 2 square metres.

Where the number of people permitted according to the density limit is less than the gathering limit, the lower number applies.

Business restrictions allow standing activities – like darts, pool, eight-ball, snooker and karaoke – in licensed venues.

Standing and drinking alcohol is permitted in designated outdoor spaces of premises with a liquor licence or liquor permit by up to a maximum of 250 people within current density requirements.

This cap on the number of people permitted to stand while consuming alcohol at these outdoor spaces is required because the Events Framework  enables larger gathering of patrons at events. Large numbers of people mixing freely and closely while consuming alcohol are very high-risk settings for spreading COVID-19.

Patrons in other indoor parts of the premises or event can only consume alcohol while sitting down, subject to density requirements.

The restriction requiring seated drinking of alcohol indoors remains in place for all other non-domestic settings, including those with a liquor licence or permit.

Restrictions remain in place for dancing in all venues where food and alcohol is consumed because of the increased risk of close contact, particularly where alcohol is consumed, and difficulty of tracing contact among patrons. Dancing is permitted at weddings for members of the bridal party and parents of the bride and groom.

For more information, including exclusions, go to Business restrictions.

Compulsory recording of contact details

The second Contact Tracing Direction requires that:

  • Hospitality premises, including restaurants, cafes and other retail food businesses where food is sold for consumption on-site, as well as businesses that serve alcohol for consumption on-site, must continue to collect contact details for people who enter and remain on the premises for at least 15 minutes
  • From 1 December 2020, events enabled under the Events Framework that are required to have an event COVID Safety Plan must collect information of patrons
  • From 15 December 2020, an expanded list of premises and businesses must collect information of people who enter and remain on the premises for at least 15 minutes.

The list of these premises and businesses is below.

Owners and operators of these businesses or premises must collect the following information from every person who enters or attends these premises for at least 15 minutes: name, contact telephone number and the date and time of entry or attendance.

Owners and operators need to ensure patron information is directly accessible and kept for at least 28 days. This information must be provided as soon as possible if it is requested by the Director of Public Health.

Businesses that use the Check in Tas application as a means to comply with the contact tracing requirements will be taken to have complied with the direction. Alternative electronic or paper-based solutions that comply with these requirements are also acceptable.

Patron information collected under these requirements can only be used for the purposes of contact tracing undertaken by Public Health and cannot be used for any other purpose.

Businesses are permitted to refuse entry to a person who refuses to provide the required information.

For guidance on how to meet contract tracing obligations visit www.business.tas.gov.au/coronavirus_information/contact_tracing

Applicable premises and businesses

From 1 December 2020, the Direction applies to:

  • A gathering, if a direction made under section 16 of the Act requires an event COVID safety plan, in a form approved by the Director of Public Health, to be developed and implemented in respect of the gathering.

From 15 December 2020, the Direction will apply to:

  • Restaurants, cafes and other retail food businesses and outlets, where food is sold for consumption at those premises.
  • Premises where alcohol is sold for consumption at those premises, including pubs, registered and licensed clubs and hotels, other than such part of those premises lawfully operated to provide alcohol for consumption at a location other than the premises.
  • Places of worship, religious gatherings, religious premises, and other similar premises, including premises used to perform a wedding or a funeral.
  • Cinemas, entertainment venues, casinos, gaming or other gambling venues, dance venues, night clubs, strip clubs, brothels and other similar premises.
  • Galleries, museums, national institutions, historic sites and other similar premises.
  • Tourist premises, venues and sites, where consideration is paid to enter such a premises, venue and site.
  • Tourism activities, and services, that are provided for consideration.
  • Concert: venues, theatres, arenas, auditoriums, stadiums and other similar premises.
  • Amusement parks, arcades, play centres and other similar premises, regardless of whether the premises are an indoor space or an outdoor space, other than skate parks and playgrounds.
  • Auction houses, real estate auctions and houses open for inspection, including display homes.
  • Hair dressing and hair salons.
  • Beauty treatment premises, including body modifications, tattoos, piercing, waxing and nail services.
  • Spas and massage parlours and other similar premises.
  • Swimming pools, gymnasiums, health clubs, fitness centres, wellness centres (including yoga and barre premises) and other similar premises or venues, whether indoors or outdoors.
  • Venues used for sport or fitness, saunas, bath houses and other similar premises or venues, whether indoors or outdoors.
  • Premises used for personal training and other pre-arranged sporting activities.
  • Zoos, wildlife centres, animal parks, petting zoos, aquariums, marine parks or similar premises.

Gathering limits are now determined by the density of the area, up to a maximum of:

  • 250 people for an undivided space in an indoor premises; and
  • 1,000 people in the outdoor space of a premises.

Maximum density limit is one person per 2 square metres.

Where the number of people permitted according to the density limit is less than the gathering limit, the lower number applies.

The maximum number of people permitted on a premises includes staff, volunteers, children and babies.

Where practicable, business operators, staff, volunteers and attendees should maintain a distance of 1.5 metres from other people.

Read more about Gatherings, density limits and physical distancing.

Gatherings at households – including shacks – are limited to up to 40 people at any one time, not including residents of the household.

You can travel and stay anywhere within Tasmania, but you must comply with the restrictions on gatherings and household visits.

You should continue to maintain physical distancing at all times when you are out (staying at least 1.5 metres from other people), wash your hands regularly and cover coughs and sneezes. You should not visit others or have visitors to your home if you are unwell.

Read more about Gatherings and physical distancing rules.

Gathering limits are now determined by the density of the area, up to a maximum of:

  • 250 people for an undivided space in an indoor premises; and
  • 1,000 people in the outdoor space of a premises.

Maximum density limit is one person per 2 square metres.

Where the number of people permitted according to the density limit is less than the gathering limit, the lower number applies.

For sporting and recreation facilities with multiple indoor spaces, the gathering cap applies separately to each single undivided indoor space. For example, a multi-purpose sporting venue with multiple, separate, undivided indoor spaces, could have up to 250 people in each of these spaces (the density limit applies). However, the maximum of 1,000 people outdoors of a premises at one time, applies regardless of whether there are multiple outdoor areas.

The maximum number of people permitted on a premises includes coaches, athletes, staff, volunteers, children and babies.

Where practicable, attendees should maintain a distance of 1.5 metres from other people.

Sporting activities permitted based on Level C of the AIS Framework for Rebooting Sport, meaning the following are permitted:

  • full contact training
  • full competition sport (contact and non-contact)
  • sharing of equipment where necessary
  • use of change rooms and other shared facilities.

Larger teams should consider maintaining some small group separation at training and non-essential social gatherings should be limited.

Gathering limits and the requirement to maintain physical distancing where practical applies to all sports, exercise and recreation.

Read more about Sport and recreation.

Most parks and reserves (including visitor centres and campgrounds) are open to the public.

For more details visit the PWS website.

You are encouraged to continue to work from home if it works for you and your employer. For example, office workers should be encouraged to work from home to help with physical distancing measures and limit the contact between people.

Last update: 20 Nov 2020 9:18am

Key contacts

For-up-to-date information, visit:

National Health Professional Disability Advisory Service

The COVID-19 Health Professionals Disability Advisory Service is a telephone advisory service established by the Commonwealth Department of Health to provide specialised advice for health professionals involved in the care of people with disability diagnosed with COVID-19 or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

Calls to the Advisory Service will be answered by health professionals with disability service qualifications and experience working with people with disability.

Health professionals can call the service on 1800 131 330. It is available between 7am – 11pm (AEST) 7 days a week.

The helpline will be available for a six week trial ending mid-August, at which point it will be assessed based on utilisation and future need.

People with disability, family and carers

Restrictions on gatherings are in place in Tasmania to help control and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our community.

Tasmanians with disabilities are subject to the same restrictions as the general population.

Some people with disability may have higher incidence of health issues, including chronic conditions and weakened immune systems. As a result, they may be at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Many people with disability also rely on support and/or care from family, carers and/or support workers. This can make physical distancing impractical or impossible and potentially puts them at higher risk of exposure to COVID-19.

People with a disability who may be older or have a health condition that puts them at higher risk of developing severe illness with COVID-19 are encouraged to take extra precautions to protect their health.

Everyone should take responsibility for protecting themselves by:

  • physical distancing
  • practising good hand hygiene
  • practising cough and sneeze hygiene
  • staying home and getting tested if you develop any cold or flu-like symptoms (even if mild).
  • downloading the COVIDsafe App.

People at higher risk of developing severe illness with COVID-19 are encouraged to monitor public health advice and take extra precautions to protect their health, especially when out and about. They should also take extra precautions to avoid contact with anyone who has cold or flu-like symptoms, including children who might not fully understand physical distancing boundaries.

It is important to discuss the situation with your GP or specialist and consider developing a COVID-19 Action Plan to help manage risk.

If you are a person with a disability who also has a health condition that places you at higher risk, you are not restricted to your home because of this advice. You may move around the community, go shopping, see friends, or do something you enjoy, if you feel comfortable and supported by medical advice you may have sought or is found in your COVID-19 Action Plan.

You must stay at your home if you are diagnosed with COVID-19 and have been directed to be in isolation. You must also stay home if someone you know has been diagnosed, and you have been identified as a close contact. In this instance, you are required to quarantine for 14 days. You will be notified if this is the case.

The Australian Government Department of Health website has Advice for people with disability.

Participants of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) should contact the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) on 1800 800 110 if they need to talk to a planner, make changes to their plan or are having trouble getting services due to COVID-19.

More information about COVID-19 for NDIS participants and their families and carers is available on the NDIS website.

The NDIS website also includes easy to read and participant fact sheets to support providers, families and carers to respond to COVID-19.

An Easy Read version of the Tasmanian Government’s Roadmap to Recovery is available on the Speak Out Tasmania website.

Tasmania has three disability advocacy services that can assist people with disability to have their say or to help understand how the COVID-19 restrictions affect you:

Management and operational plan for people with disability

The Australian Health Sector Emergency Response Plan for Novel Coronavirus guides the Australian health sector response. The Management and Operational Plan focuses on people with disability. There is an easy read version available as well.

The plan was overseen by the Advisory Committee for the COVID-19 Response for People with Disability.

It provides high-level guidance on how to manage and prevent the transmission of COVID-19 for people with disability and will be updated as needed.

Continuity planning

Disability Service Providers must have business continuity plans for responding to potential COVID-19 outbreaks, including the need to quarantine individuals with disability or staff. More information can be found on:

Individuals who are showing symptoms of COVID-19

If the individual does not meet the criteria for COVID-19 testing, continue to provide support. Implement infection control practices, physical distancing and any further direction provided by the treating doctor. For more information go to Testing for COVID-19.

An Individual who has confirmed COVID-19

All workplaces are required to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan that complies with minimum COVID-19 safety standards. See COVID-19 Safe Workplaces Framework for more information about these requirements.

Please note that Tasmanian disability facilities are exempt from the maximum gathering number, if the gathering is necessary for the normal function of the facility (eg meals). Disability facilities are also exempt from the density limit requirements (two square meters per person). Physical distancing (1.5 metres) still applies, but only where practicable, so as not to jeopardise a client’s health if they require one-to-one care. This information is relevant for disability facilities completing a COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Relevant COVID-19 Safe Workplace Guidelines provide more detail on how sectors and workplaces can meet the Minimum Standards for disability providers, including Other Residential Care Services and Social Assistance Services.

NDIS providers have specific obligations under the NDIS Code of Conduct and the NDIS Practice Standards that relate to the delivery of safe quality supports and services, and the management of risks associated with supports provided to NDIS participants. Remain up to date with specific guidance by visiting the NDIS and NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission websites.

The NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission has developed specific advice for Disability Service Providers in relation to PPE.

NDIS providers and self-managing participants who can no longer access PPE supplies through usual means can contact the National Medical Stockpile by emailing NDISCOVIDPPE@health.gov.au

The Tasmanian Government has contracted St John Ambulance to coordinate the supply of PPE to essential service providers unable to obtain their supplies through their normal supplier. Contact St John Ambulance on 1300 360 455 or ppe@stjohntas.org.au for assistance.

The situation with coronavirus is changing regularly. Stay up to date by visiting Information for providers on the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

Additional information regarding Tasmanian Stimulus and Supports for the Community can be found here.

Disability related

This section provides targeted advice regarding the Tasmanian Support Measures & Stimulus Package, in particular, the emergency accommodation supports included in this package.

This advice should be read in conjunction with National Guidelines for Residential Care Facilities.

Disability Support Workers

Disability Support Workers include workers in Tasmania’s disability accommodation facilities. These workers will be considered as frontline workers who may be eligible for Accommodation Support under the Tasmanian Support Measures & Stimulus Package.

Accommodation support for Frontline Workers

Emergency accommodation will be available for frontline workers if they need to stay away from home, in circumstances where their family members are in quarantine or symptomatic of COVID-19.

Disability Support Workers are eligible for this form of assistance.

For workers of disability accommodation, this means that emergency accommodation support will be available if it is demonstrated that they are at risk of infection if they reside at their family home. Contact the Tasmanian Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 for more information.

Accommodation support for Tasmanians at higher risk

Emergency accommodation will be available for low-income individuals and families who have been placed in quarantine but who are unable to return to their regular place of residence.

For residents of disability accommodation, this means that emergency accommodation will be available if it is demonstrated that quarantine from other residents who are at high risk within the facility cannot be reasonably achieved. Contact the Tasmanian Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 for more information.

Emergency Relief

Organisations such as Red Cross, Rural Business Tasmania and The Salvation Army can provide emergency food hampers, delivery of medications, financial counselling and other essential support for persons who are required by Public Health to quarantine due to COVID-19 risk.

For residents of disability accommodation, this means that emergency relief assistance for quarantined residents will be available where there is demonstrated need that the facility requires this form of assistance. Eligibility for these payments does not require residents to transfer to alternative accommodation. Public Health will provide an appropriate referral. Contact the Tasmanian Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 for more information.

Pandemic Isolation Assistance Grants

Pandemic Isolation Assistance Grants for vulnerable Tasmanians (also known as Emergency Relief Payments) – one-off payments will be made to low-income persons who are required by Public Health to quarantine due to COVID-19 risk.

For residents of disability accommodation, this means that one-off relief payments for quarantined residents will be available. Eligibility for these payments does not require residents to transfer to alternative accommodation. Contact the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 for more information.

Last update: 05 Nov 2020 9:08am

Emergency relief services are delivered by community organisations, providing immediate financial and other support to people in financial crisis.

The type of assistance offered by each organisation varies, however may include one-off assistance such as:

  • food, transport or chemist vouchers
  • part-payment of utility account/s
  • food parcels or clothing
  • budgeting assistance
  • referrals to other services that help to address underlying causes of financial crisis.

See also:

Australian Red Cross

Australian Red Cross provides emergency relief and casework to refugees, people seeking asylum, people in immigration detention and other people who are vulnerable as a result of migration. For information about COVID-19 Emergency Financial Assistance, visit the website.

CatholicCare Victoria Tasmania

CatholicCare provides emergency relief across Tasmania for anyone who is experiencing financial hardship for any reason. CatholicCare can assist with food/fuel vouchers, bill payments and other assistance.

To find out more, visit the website or call 1800 819 447.

Helping Hand Association

The Helping Hand provides emergency relief for the Longford area and surrounds.

The organisation provides food parcels, food vouchers and other aid.

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6391 2498.

Hobart City Mission Incorporated

Hobart city mission helps clients in Southern Tasmania with providing food packs, food vouchers, personal hygiene packs, clothing and furniture. They also assist clients in the payment and management of electricity, gas or phone bills.

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6215 4200.

Launceston Benevolent Society

The Launceston Benevolent Society provides support services for families and individuals in Launceston and surrounding areas. Services include food support, bill and expense support, clothes and other products and support.

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6344 4213.

Launceston City Mission Inc.

Emergency Relief assistance can help families and individuals living in Launceston and the North West who are experiencing financial hardship and are unable to meet basic living costs. The organisation can help with basic food packages, advocacy with electricity and Telstra bills, emergency fuel or transport needs. They can also help with referrals to other services as required. In some circumstances, Launceston City Mission may also be able to help clients gain access to medical advice, purchase medications or provide vouchers to purchase furniture, household goods and clothing.

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6335 3000.

Rural Business Tasmania Inc.

The Rural Relief Fund supports farming families and their communities in their time of most need. Offering grants of up to $2,500, crisis relief is gifted to eligible families based on urgency and the level of support required. Family and animal welfare are a priority and grant funds can cover basic household goods including food, utility bills and the repair of damaged fences.

To find out more, visit the website.

Salvation Army (Tasmania) Property Trust

The Salvation Army Doorways Centres provide Emergency Relief and case management for clients across Tasmania. Assistance includes food parcels, clothing, vouchers, payment of utility and phone bills, rental assistance, referral and assessment and advocacy.

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6228 8400.

St Vincent de Paul Tasmania

St Vincent de Paul Society continues to provide Emergency Relief through its Regional Centres, providing food and payment of other essentials.

As part of this service, the Society also supports other services and community members that may require urgent assistance with clothing or household items. There may be limited stock at the moment, but all efforts will be made to assist those in need.

To find out more, visit the website or call your local St Vincent de Paul Regional Centre:

Uniting (Victoria and Tasmania) Limited

The Uniting Emergency Relief program supports individuals and families experiencing financial crisis across Tasmania. The organisation provides nutritious food, personal care items, transport assistance, social inclusion programs, financial support, advocacy and referrals.

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6234 1296.

Wyndarra Centre Incorporated

Wyndarra provides emergency relief in the Circular Head region. The organisation provides money, Woolworths vouchers, food parcels, cheques, electricity hardship payments, Telstra vouchers, NILS support and other support.

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6452 2722.

Youth, Family and Community Connections Incorporated

YFCC coordinates and delivers Emergency Relief in the NW and West coast region of Tasmania. The organisation offers assistance with food, transport, clothing, chemist vouchers, part payment of utilities and assistance with specialist needs (eg education and health costs).

To find out more, visit the website or call (03) 6423 6635.

Last update: 02 Dec 2020 3:37pm

If your finances have been impacted by COVID-19 and you are experiencing financial difficulty it is important to get help as early as possible.

Each person’s circumstances are different, and the choices you make today may have long-term implications for your financial future.

For individuals and households

Free, confidential support and advice is available:

For businesses and industries

Make a budget

Making a budget will help you understand where your money is being spent. It will also be helpful for when you speak with a financial counsellor, your bank or lender, or when you need to apply for financial assistance.

The Moneysmart website has an online budget planner to help you get started.

What support is available?

For individuals and households:

For businesses and industries:

Water, electricity and gas service providers have a number of ways that you can keep on top of your bills, including automatic debit and weekly, fortnightly or monthly payment plans. They also have financial hardship policies. If you are having financial difficulties, call your service provider and talk through what is best for you in your circumstance. Having a plan in place will help you manage your bills now and reduce the likelihood of a growing bill that makes you anxious.

Banking and loan lenders are lowering home loan rates or allowing payments to be deferred. To understand how this will impact your loan repayments in the long term, speak to your bank or lender. If you fall behind on your repayments, contact the bank as early as possible and ask if it is possible to reduce repayments for a period of time.

Insurance companies are best placed to help with any questions about your policy or claims. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has written to insurance companies advising them of ASIC's expectation about general insurers' responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. Visit the Insurance Council of Australia website for general information about how insurance companies are responding.

Last update: 02 Dec 2020 11:16am


Gatherings at households – including shacks – are limited to up to 40 visitors at any one time, not including residents of the household.

The household gathering limit of 40 visitors applies to all private residences including your house, shack or property. The limit applies whether the gathering is taking place indoors or outdoors.

The household gathering limit of 40 visitors applies to all types of gatherings that are held at a residential premises including barbecues, celebrations and events.

You should not visit others or have visitors to your home if you are unwell.

What is a gathering?

A gathering is the total number of people present in any single undivided indoor space, or in the outdoor area of a premises. All individuals – whether they are business operators, staff, volunteers, attendees, children or babies – are considered part of the gathering number.

Why do we have maximum gathering numbers?

Advice from Public Health Services is that a staged easing of restrictions should occur to monitor the transmission risk of COVID-19. This includes a gradual increase in gathering numbers. It is important to note that where the number of people permitted according to the density limit (one person per 2 square metres) is less than the gathering limit, the lower number applies.

Read about the current restrictions on gatherings and Management of Premises Direction.

It is difficult to maintain physical distancing and effective hygiene measures in large public gatherings. Restricting gathering numbers reduces the likelihood of transmission and provides opportunities for the community to continue effective hygiene practices.

Are there any exceptions to the gathering limits?

The limits do not apply to the following specified premises, but the number of people on these premises should not exceed the total number specified in the occupancy permit for the premises under the Building Act 2016. The specified premises are:

  • Airports and premises used for public or commercial transport
  • Medical or health service facilities, including veterinary facilities
  • Disability or aged care facilities
  • Prisons, correctional facilities, youth justice centres
  • Courts or tribunals
  • Parliament
  • Schools, universities, education institutions, childcare facilities, child and family centres
  • Premises that deliver services and support to disadvantaged community members eg those providing homeless accommodation, boarding houses, emergency/social housing, child safety services, foodbanks, employment services, and migrant and refugee assistance
  • Indoor and outdoor spaces where people are transiting through
  • Boats or pontoons used for commercial tourism purposes with outdoor spaces that are used by patrons for the majority of the tour
  • Emergency services.

A Framework for COVID-19 Safe Events and Activities in Tasmania

The Tasmanian Government has released A Framework for COVID Safe Events and Activities in Tasmania, which supports organisers to plan COVID-safe gatherings from 1 December 2020 that exceed the gathering limits in the Management of Premises Direction.

Depending on the risk profile of the event, it will be classed as Level 1, 2 or 3, and different controls will apply depending on the level.

The Mass Gatherings Direction provides a legal basis for the Framework.

More information on the COVID-19 Safe Events and Activities Framework.

What about gatherings at home?

If you are hosting an event or gathering at home (or another residential property) e.g. a party, barbecue or birthday celebration, please refer to the above section ‘Household visitors.’

What is the difference between indoor and outdoor gatherings?

An indoor space is any area, room or premises that is substantially enclosed by a roof and walls (this also applies to temporary structures, for example a marquee). Outdoor spaces are not enclosed by a roof or walls. The gathering limit of 1,000 people in the outdoor space of a premises still applies where a premises has several outdoor areas. That is, even if a premises has multiple separate outdoor spaces, a maximum of 1,000 people in total are permitted in the outdoor areas of that premises at one time.

Do the limits apply to the entire venue or individual spaces?

For mixed use venues with multiple indoors spaces, the 250 people indoor gathering cap applies separately to each single undivided space indoors, allowing for two square metres of space per person.

For example, a large hotel with multiple, separate indoor spaces (eg conference room, bar, restaurant, and foyer), is permitted to have up to 250 people for each of these indoor spaces (the density limit applies).

Where a mixed use venue with multiple indoors spaces also has outdoor spaces, a maximum of 1,000 people in total are permitted in the outdoor areas of that premises at one time.

What is meant by the maximum density limit?

The maximum density limit aims to prevent the crowding of people in a space. A premises must not have a density of more than 1 person per 2 square metres of floor space. This means an operator must not allow people to enter or stay on the premises (indoor or outdoor) if the size of the premises is insufficient to allow for 2 square metres of space for each person.

What is the 2 square metres per person rule?

The maximum number of people at a premises is limited by the floor space of the premises, as a minimum of 2 square metres of space is required for each attendee. This is known as the 2 square metre rule.

The maximum number of people allowed at a premises is the smaller number of either:

  • The maximum number of people for which there is 2 square metres per person
  • The maximum number gathering number specified for the type of venue/activity

How to apply the 2 square metres per person rule

To comply with the 2 square metre rule, measure the length and width of the floor space. Multiply the length by the width to calculate the area in square metres, and divide this by 2. The final number is the maximum number of people allowed in the premises (up to the maximum gathering size).

For example, in hospitality venues, the operator of a premises must not allow people to enter or stay on the premises (whether outdoor or indoor) if the size of the premises is insufficient to allow for 2 square metres of space for each person (the two square metre rule).

Where practicable, the operator should:

  • Ensure that staff and patrons are 1.5 metres away from each other. For groups of people seated at the same table, and for staff at times, this will not be practicable.
  • Arrange the premises in such a way so that the 1.5 metre rule can be adhered to between patrons from different tables.
  • Coordinate arrivals and seating of patrons so that crowding does not occur in arrival/waiting areas.
  • Ensure that there is appropriate space between dine-in patrons and takeaway food pickup areas within the premises.

Read more about requirements of businesses under the COVID-19 Safe Workplaces Framework.

How do I stay safe in a gathering?

COVID-19 is spread through contact with people. In any gathering or setting it is important to maintain:

  • physical distancing of at least 1.5 metres between people
  • hand hygiene
  • respiratory hygiene (sneeze or cough into your elbow or a tissues and clean your hands after coughing or sneezing)
  • frequent environmental cleaning and disinfection.

Why is staying 1.5 metres from others important?

Physical distancing continues to be the strongest safeguard to prevent the spread of COVID-19. You must continue to maintain a safe distance of no less than 1.5 metres between yourself and others, where safe and practical.

Physical distancing in schools

Physical distancing of children in schools, early childhood centres and playgroups is not required under current restrictions. The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) advises that there is very limited evidence of transmission of COVID-19 between children.

All adults (including parents/carers) must still maintain physical distance from each other (1.5 metres) but this does not apply to children.

Number of guests at weddings

Churches and commercial premises

The number of guests at a wedding is determined by the size of the venue in line with the current density limits that apply to all venues.

There is a maximum of one person per two square metres.

The number of guests is capped at:

  • 250 people for indoor venues
  • 1,000 people at outdoor venues.

These numbers include the bridal party as well as wedding officials.

Residential premises

Under current restrictions, only 40 people (in addition to the people who normally live at a residential premises) are permitted to gather at a residential premises. This means that a wedding can only be held at a residential property if there are no more than 40 people (including the bridal party, celebrant, caterer, photographers etc, but excluding people who normally live at the property). For example, if the bride and groom live at the property, they are not included in the 40 people limit.

  • If a residential premises is located on a large block of land, that entire block of land is part of the residential premises. A wedding cannot be held on land that forms part of a residential property when there are more than 40 people attending (in addition to the people who normally live at a residential premises).
  • For example, a wedding held in a barn which forms part of a residential premises on acreage would still be limited to 40 persons, in addition to the persons that ordinarily reside at the premises.
  • A farm is considered to be a residential premises if persons reside on the premises (the property).

Dancing

Due to disease transmission risk posed by the close proximity of people when dancing, restrictions remain in place for dancing.

The wedding couple, the parents or guardians of the wedding couple and the other members of the bridal party are permitted to dance at a wedding or a wedding reception. All other attendees are not permitted to dance under current restrictions.

A Framework for COVID-19 Safe Events and Activities in Tasmania has been launched to support event organisers to plan and hold larger-scale COVID-19 safe events from 1 December 2020.

The Framework has been developed in consultation with the events, sports, arts and entertainment sectors and is consistent with World Health Organization, Australian Health Protection Principal Committee, and Public Health Services advice.

It will be a living document and will be reviewed over time as the rules for mass gatherings and events are updated to reflect the changing COVID-19 situation in Tasmania. The Framework will enable organisers to apply to hold an event under one of three levels.

For further information on the Events Framework click here.

Last update: 18 Nov 2020 9:38am

Visiting public hospital patients

A COVID-19 Visitor Policy has been developed for Tasmania’s Public Hospitals and Clinics. The Policy places some restrictions on who can visit and when they can visit, as well as measures all visitors should apply to reduce the risk of COVID-19 being passed on to patients in hospital. This is important because patients may be at higher risk of moderate to severe illness from COVID-19 – particularly as they recover from other illnesses or while undergoing treatment.

Unless you are seeking personal medical treatment or care, you should not visit hospital, outpatient departments or clinic sites if you have:

  • fever (or signs of fever, including chills or night sweats)
  • runny nose
  • cough
  • sore/itchy throat
  • shortness of breath
  • loss of taste or smell.

COVID-19 can also present with the following symptoms that can occur on their own or combined with the other symptoms: headaches, muscle and joint pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, loss of appetite and fatigue. If you are experiencing these symptoms you should consider a COVID-19 test as part of managing your illness. Call the Public Health Hotline 1800 671 738 or your GP for more information.

All visitors will be required to complete a visitor screening tool prior to entering the hospital. You should not be visiting a hospital or clinic settings if you been advised to quarantine following international or interstate travel.

Follow guidelines such as washing hands prior to and after leaving the ward, covering coughs and sneezes and maintaining physical distancing (at least 1.5 metres) while at the hospital.

Restrictions are in place for specific hospitals and hospital wards. See the table below for more information.

Visitors to private hospitals should contact the hospital directly to find out their policy in relation to visitors.

Visiting hours

Visiting hours for Launceston General, Mersey Community and the Royal Hobart Hospitals are restricted to 2.00pm-6.00pm daily, with the exception of North West Regional Hospital which is 2.30pm – 6pm. Visitors for District Hospitals and Health Centre should check directly with the relevant facility prior to their arrival regarding conditions of entry and hours. From Friday 30 November, the Mersey Community Hospital emergency department will resume a 24-hour service.

To provide additional safeguards to patients, the following restrictions will also be in place:

  1. Visitors will be limited to a maximum of one per patient at any one time (note exceptions below for specific hospital wards or locations).
  2. The use of alternative methods of communication ie telephone or FaceTime/Skype to stay connected with families/carers/social networks should be encouraged.
  3. Visitors should not congregate in common areas or use kitchenettes/pantries/other shared areas across the organisation.
  4. Visitors within multi-bed rooms should be monitored to ensure adherence to physical distancing principles.

Please note exceptions to this may be negotiated at unit management level (Nurse Unit Manager) with consideration on a case-by-case basis. Contact the Nurse Unit Manager or Associate Nurse Unit Manager at the hospital if seeking an exception.

Visitor numbers for wards

Area / ward

Number of visitors

Outpatient clinics and community centres

Support person only

Department of Critical Care Medicine

No more than two visitors per patient will be allowed entry at a time

Emergency Department

A single visitor is permitted in the following circumstances:

  • A parent/guardian of a dependent child
  • A support person for a patient requiring significant physical, communication or comprehension assistance.
  • On compassionate grounds

Neonatal Intensive Care

Parents / carers have unrestricted visiting with a maximum of two people visiting. Compassionate situation – exemptions may be applied for siblings

Paediatric Unit

Parents/carers have unrestricted visiting with a maximum of two people visiting

Maternity Unit

An upper limit of two people to support mothers in the maternity unit (this limit of two includes the partner, if the partner is present)

Operating Theatre and Recovery Room

Visitors not routinely allowed. Parents may visit children post-surgery

Acute Medical Unit (ACU or ICU)

Two support person permitted

Palliative Care

An upper limit of four visitors for patients receiving end-of-life care, and the capacity for one visitor to stay overnight and for pets to visit where appropriate

See Hospital FAQs for more information.

Health Services in the North West

From Friday 30 November, the Mersey Community Hospital emergency department will resume a 24-hour service. If you require emergency health care in the North West,  please contact Triple Zero (000) or present to the emergency department at the North West Regional Hospital.

For all other healthcare needs contact your regular GP. To support non-emergency patients in the North West, additional GP services are being arranged.

Last update: 25 Nov 2020 8:38am

Residential tenancy changes during the COVID-19 emergency period

A number of changes have been made to residential tenancies in Tasmania under the COVID-19 Disease (Emergency Provisions) Act 2020.

Changes include:

  • Temporary suspension of evictions in most circumstances;
  • Immediate halt to any increases in rent;
  • Ability to reduce rent by mutual agreement;
  • Applications to break a lease due to severe hardship;
  • Limited property inspections;
  • Delays in evictions due to rent in arrears;
  • Minor changes to responsibility for cleanliness and damage if the tenant is unable to do so due to COVID-19. For example, if a tenant is moving out of a property and is unable to get a commercial company to clean the carpets because of lockdown restrictions in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Tasmanian Government has extended the COVID-19 emergency period for residential tenancies to 31 January 2021. This means some protections initially put in place for residential tenants during the pandemic, and due to expire on 1 December have been extended to 31 January 2021.

See the Consumer, Building and Occupational Services (CBOS) website for more information.

COVID-19 Rent Relief Fund

The Tasmanian Government is providing rent relief for residential households who rent homes in the private market and who are experiencing housing stress because of the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

The COVID-19 Rent Relief Fund was established in May 2020 to assist tenants suffering from extreme hardship, with support of up to $2,000 or four weeks rent available.

Tenants who have already received financial help to pay their rent can apply for a second or third rental extra support payment if their circumstances have not changed.

A Landlord Support fund has also been established for landlords suffering from financial hardship as a result of COVID-19. Landlords can now apply for a second round of financial help from the Landlord Extra Support Fund.

The Support Funds are available until 31 January 2021.

For more information, go to the Communities Tasmania website.

Last update: 02 Dec 2020 8:57am

Term 4 school arrangements

Term 4 dates remain as normal for all schools.

All students who are well will continue to learn at school.

Students with health concerns that may place them at higher risk of moderate to severe illness from COVID-19 will be supported to continue learning at home where possible. To make arrangements, talk to your school about what support they can provide.

The Department of Education Learning at Home webpage provides some ideas and activities which may assist in supporting a child’s learning at home. This is accessible to any family with internet access.

Safety

All schools are working hard to apply Public Health and Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) guidance to their site’s practices. Schools are also applying guidance from WorkSafe Tasmania’s COVID-19 Safe Workplaces Framework.

The AHPPC has recommended schools remain open. Their advice is that pre-emptive closures are not likely to be effective to prevent community transmission of COVID-19 at this time. The most important strategies for schools and the Education and Care sector to implement to assist families to stay healthy include:

  • Promoting personal hygiene and cough and sneeze etiquette
  • Additional cleaning (especially of frequently touched surfaces)
  • Encouraging physical distancing by cancelling or postponing a range of activities
  • Supporting staff and families to stay home if they are unwell
  • Supporting those who are more at risk of severe illness if they contract COVID-19
  • Looking after the psychological wellbeing of students, staff and families.

Temporary site closures will likely occur when a confirmed case of COVID-19 is identified at a site. This is to support the Department of Health to conduct contact tracing, and provide time for cleaning and re-assurance to the affected school or service community. All temporary closures will be arranged in consultation with Department of Health.

Physical distancing in schools

Physical distancing of children in schools, early childhood centres and playgroups is not required under current restrictions. The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) advises that there is very limited evidence of transmission of COVID-19 between children.

All adults (including parents/carers) must still maintain physical distance from each other (1.5 metres) but this does not apply to children.

Student transport

For schools that do not operate their own bus services see Transport – School Buses.

For schools with their own bus services, please refer to the relevant school for details.

Student accommodation

All student accommodation facilities (whether Government or Independent) operating in the COVID-19 environment have changed their procedures to include increased cleaning and physical distancing measures as far as practicable. Good personal hygiene and cough/sneeze etiquette is being encouraged as well as strong support for students (and their families) should they become unwell.

Should I send my child to school?

All children who are well should be sent to school. Alternative care arrangements should be considered for those children who may be at high risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Parents should seek medical advice for these children.

Children should not be sent to school if they feel unwell with cold or flu-like symptoms including:

  • fever
  • runny nose
  • cough, sore/itchy throat or
  • shortness of breath

Children should stay home and you should phone your GP or the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 for a referral to be tested for COVID-19.

Children should only be returning to school once their cold/flu like symptoms have passed.

If your child has serious symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, call Triple Zero (000).

Hay fever and COVID-19 symptoms

Hay fever can be caused by allergies to pollen from some flowering plants and is more common in Tasmania during spring and summer.

Hay fever symptoms can include:

  • runny, itchy or blocked nose
  • sneezing
  • itchy, sore and watery eyes
  • a cough.

These are also symptoms of a cold, flu and COVID-19 so it is hard to tell them apart without testing.

Students experiencing hay fever symptoms, even mild symptoms, should get tested for COVID-19.

They should stay home and not attend school while they wait for their test results.

Students can return to school if they have:

  1. had a test for COVID-19 while they had symptoms and the result was negative
  2. consulted a doctor to discuss their symptoms and received advice/treatment to manage them
  3. received a certificate or letter from their doctor stating they currently have hay fever and can attend school.

If a student’s symptoms worsen throughout the hay fever season or new symptoms develop, they should see their GP who may ask them to get tested for COVID-19 again.

School events

Schools have begun to reintroduce certain activities, such as assemblies, excursions, sports carnivals, interschool competitions and parent/teacher meetings.

All activities will be subject to proper hygiene practices, current gathering restrictions and physical distancing requirements for adults. A record will also be kept of all adults visiting school sites.

For more information about events for Tasmanian Government Schools, see the Parent and Carer Guide.

Families with children at Catholic and Independent Schools should contact their school for advice on arrangements regarding activities and events.

Exams for Year 11 and 12 students

At this stage, external assessments for Year 11 and 12 students are scheduled to go ahead with COVID-safe practices in place, in line with the published timetables.

Current measures to restrict potential spread of COVID-19 won’t substantially change how students experience their exams and assessments. Students will need to follow the instructions given by Exam Supervisors, the signage at Exam Centres and bring the personal supplies needed to complete the exam.

Students are not to attend an exam if they have cold or flu like symptoms, or if they are in isolation awaiting a COVID-19 test result.

Students with hay fever symptoms are to follow advice on ‘Hay fever and COVID-19 symptoms’, including getting tested for COVID-19, consulting a GP about managing hay fever symptoms, and obtaining a certificate or letter to go back to school or attend exams.

More information about what students should do if they are sick with possible COVID-19 symptoms during the exam period is available at Illness and emergency during exams, or by contacting TASC.

School celebrations, social events and end-of-year functions

Public Health has developed some clear guidance to allow celebrations, social events and end-of-year functions to occur on school sites.

These events will be able to go ahead but will need to be held in accordance with current Public Health directions. This means that it will be required that these events are undertaken within the venue density requirements (one person per 2 square metres, up to a maximum of 250 people) of the site on which they are planned to be held.

Dancing will be able to occur as part of such events. The requirement to have two separate areas for eating/drinking and dancing has now been removed for end-of-year functions ONLY (ie. leavers dinners), provided that only students and teachers from that school are in attendance and no alcohol is consumed. All other school social or celebration events will need to adhere to the requirement to have two separate areas for eating/drinking and dancing.

COVID safe behaviours including hygiene measures and visitor screening will need to be applied to such events.

Celebrations taking place off site will need to comply with the venue’s COVID Safety plan.

Child and Family Centres

Child and Family Centres are open, with hygiene, physical distancing and safety protocols in place.

Families will continue to be referred to appropriate services as required.

For more information visit the Child & Family Centres website.

For more information

Education and Care Services

Education and Care and Child Care Services include long day care, family day care, outside schools hours care and vacation care programs.

These services are performing a vital role providing education and care for children.

Find an Education and Care or Child Care Service

To find a service, families can call the Child Care Family Helpline on 1800 291 041 from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. Families can also search for early childhood education and child care services online using Starting Blocks and Child Care Finder

The Education & Care Unit within the Department of Education regulates these services in Tasmania and has links to information and organisations offering support for families.

Early Childhood Education and Care Support Measures

Throughout 2020, the Australian Government has implemented measures to help the early childhood education and care sector manage the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

These measures included an Early Childhood Education and Care Relief Package (6 April to 12 July) and a Transition Payment (13 July to 27 September).  The Child Care Subsidy (CCS) and Additional Child Care Subsidy (ACCS) also recommenced from 13 July.  All CCS approved early childhood education and care service providers have been able to receive this Transition Payment to help them transition back to CCS.

With the Transition Payment ending on Sunday 27 of September 2020, a new Recovery Package has been announced.

What does this mean?

  • Additional support payments are in place for Victoria.
  • Nationally the eased activity test will be extended to 4 April 2021 to support families whose employment has been affected by COVID-19.
  • Should similar outbreaks occur elsewhere in the country, support for families and services will be provided as needed.
  • Services at risk of imminent closure, temporary or permanent, can apply for support through the Community Child Care Fund Special Circumstances program.

Here is more information about what the package means for services across Australia.

Here is a presentation that provides more information.

For more information on Australian Government Early Childhood Education and Care Support please see the Early Childhood Education and Care COVID-19 Information on the Department of Education, Skills and Employment website.

Support for providers

Information about Government Support for the Education and Care Sector has been developed by the Department of Education.

Safety

The Department of Education has information on being COVID-safe in early childhood education and care.

Based on Public Health, Workplace Health and Safety and Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) guidance for education and care and child care we recommend:

  • unwell staff, children and visitors are advised to stay home
  • consider reduced mixing of children by separating them into groups (including the staggering of meal and play times)
  • enhanced personal hygiene for children, staff and parents, including having liquid soap and running water or alcohol-based hand sanitiser available
  • full adherence to the NHMRC childcare cleaning guidelines, with additional daily cleaning of high-touch surfaces and washing of toys and play items
  • excursions only to be undertaken when risk mitigation strategies, including consideration of risks associated with COVID-19, are in place
  • influenza vaccinations for children, staff and parents will be encouraged.

Should I send my child to child care?

Children should not be sent to Education and Care services if they feel unwell with cold or flu-like symptoms including:

  • fever
  • runny nose
  • cough, sore/itchy throat or
  • shortness of breath

Children should stay home and you should phone your GP or the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 for a referral to be tested for COVID-19. Children should only be returning to Education and Care once their cold/flu like symptoms have passed.

If your child has serious symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, call Triple Zero (000).

For more information

Education and Care Unit (Department of Education)
Phone: 6165 5425
Email: ecu.comment@education.tas.gov.au

Last update: 03 Dec 2020 10:19am

Gathering restrictions are in place for sport, exercise and recreational activities.

Easing of restrictions will be assessed by Public Health Services throughout each stage. The following currently applies to sport, exercise and recreation activities in Tasmania.



Gatherings are limited to 1,000 people (including athletes and support staff) in the outdoors of a premises for community sport and 250 for an undivided space in an indoor premises, or a maximum of one person per 2 square metres under the density limit, whichever is less.

Indoor pools are limited to 250 people (including athletes and support staff) in each single undivided space, or a maximum of one person per 2 square metres under the density limit, whichever is less. Outdoor pools are limited to a maximum of 1,000 people (including athletes and support staff) in the whole outdoor area of premises, or a maximum of one person per 2 square metres under the density limit, whichever is less.

All people in any single undivided space count towards the maximum number of people permitted. For example, spectators at a pool, athletes and coaches, and canteen staff at a sporting facility are all counted within the maximum number of people permitted.

For sporting and recreation facilities with multiple indoor spaces, the gathering cap applies separately to each single undivided indoor space. For example, a multi-purpose sporting venue with multiple, separate, undivided indoor spaces, could have up to 250 people in each of these spaces (the density limit applies). However, the maximum of 1,000 people outdoors of a premises at one time, applies regardless of whether there are multiple outdoor areas.

Sporting activities permitted based on Level C of the AIS Framework for Rebooting Sport, meaning the following are permitted:

  • full contact training;
  • full competition sport (contact and non-contact);
  • sharing of equipment where necessary; and
  • use of change rooms and other shared facilities.

Larger teams should consider maintaining some small group separation at training and non-essential social gatherings should be limited.

Gathering limits and the requirement to maintain physical distancing where practical applies to all sports, exercise and recreation.

The government is taking steps to ease COVID-19 restrictions in a balanced way that supports both the health and safety of all Tasmanians.

The Australian Institute of Sport Framework for Rebooting Sport (AIS Framework) is the guiding document for resuming sport and recreation in Tasmania and specifies activities for community and individual sports according to the level of restrictions currently in place.

A return to full sporting activity (indoors and outdoors) in alignment with Level C of the AIS framework comes into place as of midday Friday 26 June 2020.

The maximum density limit of 2 square metres per person applies for outdoor and indoor sport, with a cap of 1,000 people outdoors and 250 people per single undivided space indoors (participants, athletes, support staff, officials, spectators and volunteers are counted within the maximum).

Where practical, players and athletes should maintain 1.5 metres from other people. Larger teams should consider maintaining some small group separation at training.

Non-essential social gatherings should be limited.

COVID-19 Safety Plan for workplaces

All workplaces (including sporting organisations) are required to implement measures to meet the COVID-19 minimum standards and record this in a COVID-19 Safety Plan.

The WorkSafe Tasmania website outlines the minimum standards that workplaces are required to meet, in order to manage the ongoing risk of COVID-19 transmission. A set of guidelines has been developed to support the sport and recreation sector on how best to meet the minimum standards.

Sporting organisations in Tasmania should prepare COVID-19 Safety Plans to ensure they comply with the minimum standards in relation to physical distancing, cleaning, general hygiene practices and health of participants.

State Sporting Organisations (SSO) should submit their COVID-19 Safety Plans to Communities, Sport and Recreation (CSR) at sportrec@communities.tas.gov.au. CSR will not be providing endorsement of COVID-19 Safety Plans but will be able to check them for general compliance.

All sports clubs and associations should discuss their COVID-19 Safety Plans with their relevant SSO in the first instance.

Sport and recreation facilities

Sport and recreation facility owners and managers are encouraged, as part of their COVID-19 Safety Plan, to consider appropriate control measures when reopening facilities, including cleaning and general hygiene practices.

Change rooms, showers and toilets at sporting centres/facilities are permitted to be used, but people are encouraged to continue to avoid using these facilities where possible. Non-essential personnel should be discouraged from entering change rooms.

For further information, contact Communities, Sport and Recreation on sportrec@communities.tas.gov.au or 1800 252 476.

A Framework for COVID-19 Safe Events and Activities in Tasmania has been launched to support event organisers to plan and hold larger-scale COVID-19 safe events from 1 December 2020.

The Framework has been developed in consultation with the events, sports, arts and entertainment sectors and is consistent with World Health Organization, Australian Health Protection Principal Committee, and Public Health Services advice.

It will be a living document and will be reviewed over time as the rules for mass gatherings and events are updated to reflect the changing COVID-19 situation in Tasmania. The Framework will enable organisers to apply to hold an event under one of three levels.

For further information on the Events Framework click here.

Last update: 13 Jul 2020 11:24am

Gathering limits do not apply to:

  • Public transport
  • Commercial passenger transport (eg a shuttle bus as part of a paid tour)
  • Private vehicles, aircrafts or boats (recreational flying and boating is permitted)
  • Community transport services such as those provided by many local councils and NGOs to support access to medical care and other essential services.

Passengers are encouraged to keep physical distancing in mind and choose a seat away from others where possible.

Using buses safely

Anyone feeling unwell should avoid using public transport.

For short trips, consider walking or cycling.

Travel outside peak periods where possible.

While waiting at bus stops, practice social distancing.

Adults seeking to board a bus which has a high number of passengers are asked to consider waiting for the next service where available. This request does not apply to children.

Practice good hand hygiene. If possible use hand sanitiser before and after catching the bus.

Spread out on board as much as you can. Members of the same household and family groups can sit together.

Avoid touching surfaces inside the bus whenever you can.

Please comply with any requests from your bus driver.

Metro Tasmania has implemented an enhanced cleaning regime of its bus fleet by its contractor, with particular attention being paid to frequently touched surfaces. More information is available on the Metro Tasmania website.

For more information on catching buses safely go to Travel safe together.

Cashless ticketing options

Regular bus passengers are urged to make sure they have, and top-up, a smartcard where available to help reduce person-to-person contact when handling cash.

Passengers should contact their bus operator to enquire about cashless ticketing options such as smartcards. Using a smartcard will also save you 20 per cent on regular fares.

Where only cash tickets are available, passengers are asked to purchase 10-ride tickets to reduce the number of transactions.

Drivers will accept cash fares but passengers are encouraged to have the correct fare ready when boarding.

Fares are listed on the Transport Tasmania and Metro Tasmania websites.

School bus arrangements

School bus services to Government, Catholic and Independent schools are operating as normal.

Advice on school bus cleaning has been circulated to all contracted school bus operators in the state with new requirements for more regular cleaning of bus interiors.

Students should not use public transport if they are unwell.

To support physical distancing, students should consider the following:

  • If undertaking short trips, consider walking or cycling.
  • When queuing at bus stops, keep a minimum of one metre from other passengers.
  • Choose a seat away from others where possible.
  • Always comply with requests from the driver.
  • Not occupying the first row of seats nearest to the driver.