Covid Victoria: Confusion reigns over Remembrance Day services

Victorian-era veterans are asking for clarification on the state’s roadmap so that more people can attend events in honor of our fallen soldiers.

Victorian-era veterans are asking for clearer guidelines on Remembrance Day gatherings as they plan memorial services for next month.

Branches of RSL and the state opposition want clarity on the government’s roadmap so that more people can attend events in honor of our fallen soldiers.

Remembrance Day – marking the date that guns on the Western Front fell silent – will come about a week after Victoria is expected to hit her goal of 80% fully immunized and restrictions will ease considerably.

It comes after veterans were disappointed earlier this year when Melbourne’s Anzac Day parade was limited to 7,500 participants and the dawn service was limited to just 1,400.

RSL Victoria President Robert Webster was in talks with the Department of Health and the Department of Employment, Constituencies and Regions regarding Remembrance Day services.

“We plan to prepare general guidelines for each of the sub-branches,” he said.

“We plan to have 100 people serving at Springvale War Cemetery by invitation only.

“We hope to have something in our secondary branches by the end of the week. ”

But Hawthorn RSL chairman Lucas Moon said that due to RSL Victoria’s “lack of clarity”, the branch made its own decisions regarding Remembrance Day services.

“We have already planned to hold a safe event against Covid at the Hawthorn Cenotaph in St James Park,” he said.

“Our reading of the guidelines is that you can have 30 people outside. We stepped in early after the Anzac Day debacle to interpret the rules and give people some certainty. “

The state opposition called on the government to give RSL clubs certainty to host Remembrance Day events on November 11 as part of the roadmap. Opposition veteran spokesman Tim Bull said there were questions about the rule limiting outdoor events with people fully vaccinated to 50% of their capacity.

Mr Bull said sub-branches of RSL had indicated that the cenotaphs had no capacity and that the clubs had not been instructed on how to determine the numbers and whether they should check rules such as verification of the vaccination status of participants.

“Remembrance Day is a time when everyone should be able to come together to honor all who have served, and especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice,” he said. “The state government’s roadmap, if followed, will exclude unvaccinated veterans and their families from attending.”

A state government spokesperson said: “We are working closely with the shrine and RSL as custodians of this important day, to ensure that anyone who wishes can commemorate it in a meaningful way.”

THE MELBOURNE CUP WILL WELCOME THOUSANDS

The race that stops the nation will now be the race that restarts the city, with the Melbourne Cup taking place in front of up to 10,000 fans.

The trackside crowd was locked in on a trial basis for the state’s reopening, along with a return concert at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl on October 30 – days after the state is supposed to reach the 70% double dose cap – with Molly Meldrum calling for a ‘Best Of Melbourne’ bill to light up the scene.

“There are so many amazing singers who live here,” Meldrum told The Herald Sun.

Thousands of spectators will also be allowed on Oaks Day and Stakes Day, if 80% of people aged 16 and over across Victoria are fully vaccinated by then.

Prime Minister Daniel Andrews announced the events on Sunday, saying it was an important step forward.

“Getting vaccinated means we can open up, and indeed we will,” said Mr Andrews.

“We’re going to normalize the virus, walk through that tough bridge and open up and come back doing what we do best, which is the big events and all the things that absolutely define us. “

Victoria’s double dose rate is now 58.6% and is expected to reach 80% by November 5.

From Monday, a “vaccinated economy” trial will begin in 14 companies in six municipalities.

Businesses, including cinemas, hotels, cafes, a gym, a church and a beauty clinic, will test the technology of vaccination certificates.

This follows an update that will allow fully vaccinated Victorians to upload their vaccination certificates to the Service Victoria app starting Monday.

A lineup for the Melbourne concert, featuring only Victorian artists, will be unveiled soon.

But Meldrum and other figures in the music industry believe big names like Tina Arena, John Farnham, Kate Ceberano, Mark Seymour, James Reyne and Paul Kelly would be on a wishlist of potential performers. Others said the musical blockbusters Moulin Rouge and Frozen should also be considered.

The plan to open Flemington to vaccinated punters has highlighted the benefits of being vaccinated against Covid-19, Racing Victoria chief executive Giles Thompson said.

As part of the move, participants will be spread across multiple zones with assigned seats.

They will only be able to attend if they wear a mask and are fully vaccinated, or have a vaccination exemption.

For the Cup, with a lower chance of the state reaching an 80% double dose rate by then, only those within 25 km of the track will be allowed to attend.

“We are delighted that the race to stop a nation heralds the restart of our city,” said Victorian Racing Club President Neil Wilson.

The club will work closely with the authorities on other rules for participation.

Victoria Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief executive Paul Guerra said a return of racing crowds would allow the state to resume its role as Australia’s event and sport capital – and would send “an important signal that Melbourne is back to business”.

While Victoria Tourism Industry Council chief executive Felicia Mariani said the kickoff “would give a sense of hope” that the state is on the road to recovery from huge losses.

But Save Victorian Events Inc spokesperson Simon Thewlis called the announcement a “slap in the face” to all companies in the event industry who are unsure of when they can accommodate more than 150 people inside. .

“Throughout this crisis we have seen one set of rules for the sport and another for the events industry,” he said.

Opposition spokesperson for small business and the CBD recovery, David Southwick, called for consistency, saying the government “picks and chooses winners and losers.”

Prime Minister Scott Morrison hailed the decision to vaccinate the crowds, saying the Victorians had sacrificed “a lot more” than anyone else in the country during the pandemic.


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