NOTE: COVID Advice is frequently changing and this blog post reflects our understanding of the latest public health guidelines as of the date of the post. You should always rely on official NSW Government Advice for the most current rules for your area. They can be found here.
Covid has dominated all our lives for quite a while now, and although we are all tired of talking about it, this week there is some good news. This NSW Government has provided residents with a ‘roadmap’ out of the pandemic, and it will provide a brighter future for the community.
The key message from NSW State Premiere is that “Vaccination remains our ticket to freedom, so we need to work even harder to get jabs in arms, to help stop the spread, minimise outbreaks and ensure people are protected”1. So, get vaccinated if you haven’t already!
Once 80% of the adult population (16+) have received two doses of the vaccine, fully vaccinated adults will be able to attend and host gatherings in the home and in outdoor public spaces, with capacity limits on attendees. Hospitality, retail stores and gyms will be able to reopen, but must abide by space per person requirements. Major outdoor recreation facilities can reopen with space requirements and capacity limits. Entertainment, information (libraries) and education facilities (excluding nightclubs and amusement centres) can also reopen with space requirements. Perhaps one of the biggest new freedoms will be the ability to travel unrestricted between greater Sydney and regional NSW. There are more details and freedoms provided in the ‘Covid-19 Roadmap to recovery fact sheet’.
From the 1 December 2021 additional freedoms will be granted universally (for the vaccinated and unvaccinated) which will largely return life to normal.
What does it mean for the services we provide?
Our one-on-one supports have continued through lockdown and will continue, but access to the community will improve significantly with these new freedoms for vaccinated adults. We encourage any of our participants with questions, looking to return to services, or increase supports, to contact your Team Leader directly for assistance.
We are planning to resume unrestricted Group Supports from the 1 December in line with the NSW Roadmap. Some outdoor group activities for vaccinated participants and support workers have also begun to occur. We will contact all our previous attendees of the groups and issue an updated calendar soon. If you’d like more information on our group activities, please contact Matt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Other steps we are taking to keep our community safe
To help keep our community, Participants and Support Workers safe there are a few other things we are committed to doing.
- Proof of vaccination– We are encouraging all our Support Workers and Participants to be vaccinated. We are keeping records of who is vaccinated so we can abide by easing public health orders and as we are more active in the community. We are open to having a conversation around this, but we will be required to abide by any changes in legislation and public health orders.
- Contact prior to support – Our Support Workers will contact you prior to a scheduled shift to confirm you are in good health, are not a close contact, or have not recently been to any exposure sites. This is to protect our Support Workers and other Participants from spreading the virus. If there is a concern the support may need to be rescheduled (if possible) or we may need to take additional steps to protect you and our Support Worker.
- Wear a mask– On supports a Support Worker will always wear a mask, carry hand sanitiser with them and follow public health guidelines, including utilising QR codes to check into venues.
What we need from you?
Just two simple things for the time being.
- If you become aware that you are unwell, are a close contact, or have been to an exposure site please contact your Team Leader immediately so we can best assist you.
- If you have received two doses of a vaccination, please let your Team Leader know.
We are here to support you through what we know is a challenging time for everyone. We are optimistic that working together as a community and rolling up our sleeves to get the jab will see this challenging time over sooner rather than later. If you have any questions or concerns with regards to the services we provide and your health or safety please contact us directly so we can discuss.