oronavirus restrictions in NSW to be eased for wedding, funerals and religious services

| 29.05,20. 05:13 PM |

oronavirus restrictions in NSW to be eased for wedding, funerals and religious services

Up to 20 people will be able to attend weddings.(Supplied: Jeremy Wong)

The New South Wales Government has announced coronavirus restrictions at religious services, weddings and funerals will be relaxed from June 1.

Twenty people will be able to attend weddings, 50 at religious services at places of worship and 50 at funerals, subject to the four-square-metre rule.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said it was still important for people to follow health advice.

"We know how important these services are to individuals and families but as we ease restrictions further, we must remember to keep one another safe," Ms Berejiklian said.

Health Minister Brad Hazzard said extensive COVID-19 outbreaks in places of worship and amongst choirs overseas highlighted why the NSW Government had been cautious in easing restrictions.

"Sadly, we have seen many congregations of different faiths and denominations affected by COVID-19 overseas," Mr Hazzard said.

"NSW Health has developed a checklist to help places of worship create a tailored COVID-19 safety plan to ensure they can keep participants as safe as possible.

"These safety plans cover topics such as physical-distancing measures, hand hygiene and cleaning measures. It is also vital that people who are unwell stay at home."

NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant said places of worship would need to adapt despite the easing of restrictions.

"Places of worship will be asked to find alternatives to practices that might spread the virus like group singing, sharing books and even passing around the collection plate to reduce infection risks," Dr Chant said.

"Communal singing and chanting should not occur because of the high risk of transmission of the virus. Instead, measures such as one singer standing at least 3 metres away from others would be safer."

NSW previously allowed up to 10 guests to attend weddings, not including the couple, while up to 20 mourners could attend indoor funerals and 30 if the service was outdoors.

Up to 10 worshippers could attend other religious gatherings at a time.

Those restrictions were eased from May 15.

Also since that date, people in NSW have been allowed public gatherings of up to 10 people.

And cafes and restaurants have been allowed to service 10 seated customers at a time.

From June 1 pubs, clubs, cafes and restaurants will be able to have up to 50 customers.


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