Schools Remain Open but Pubs, Clubs, Gyms, Casinos to Close – COVID-19 Coronavirus Update 22 March 2020

scott morrison coronavirus cabinet meeting

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced new restrictions after the emergency National Cabinet meeting Sunday 22 March 2020. 


Here’s a quick summary of these additional widespread restrictions, described as Stage 1 of the response to the growing spread of COVID-19.

Places of social gathering, especially entertainment venues are to be closed as of midday Monday 23 March 2020:

♦ registered and licensed clubs, and night clubs to close

♦ licensed areas in pubs and hotels (excluding accommodation areas) to close

♦ casinos to close

♦ cinemas and entertainment venues to close

♦ indoor sporting venues and gyms to close

♦ places of worship to close – special services such as funerals will need to adhere to social distancing rules (4 sqm per person in an indoor venue, under 100 people)

♦ restaurants and cafes can be open for take-away and home deliveries only (no dining in)

♦ bottle shops can remain open

♦ hairdressers, beauticians can remain open

♦ shopping centres will remain open.

The message around these new rules from Scott Morrison is that,
“Social distancing is vital. The failure of the public to do that will put people at risk.
We need Australians to do their bit.”

The Prime Minister said that these arrangements are not a change for just two weeks, we need to be prepared that these arrangements may be for at least 6 months.


The Prime Minister confirmed that schools are to remain open – there has been no change to health advice in relation to schools.

He said he is, “Ensuring we do that as long as possible.”
There is a consensus view of health officers to keep schools open.

“We want our children to continue to get an education.”

“We want to avoid having to sacrifice the education of our children.”

Scott Morrison said that they will allow parents until the end of term to keep children home if they choose to.

For all parents who wish to send their children to school, they will remain open.
He stressed that it is important that schools must remain open until the end of the term. Each state may review this. For example Victoria has already taken the decision to bring their school holiday forward to Tuesday – they were ending their school term on Friday anyway.

Parents who make the decision to not send their kids to school must take responsibility for their children. 

His message was that, if you choose to keep your children at home, it’s important they observe strict social distancing. This is not an excuse for them to hang out at the shopping mall together and be in contact with people in our community who could be at high risk.

The Prime Minister said that we have to live differently. We need to accept that there won’t be holidays as usual during this term break. No trips that are usually done during school holidays interstate or overseas will be happening. We need to be holidaying at home basically. He stressed that this is a critical time.

Australia’s Chief Medical Officer, Professor Brendan Murphy added that, 
“If Australia is going to get through this pandemic we have to live differently.” 

It was indicated that these measures have been put in place because people have not been getting the message.

He stressed this to young people:

“As a young person you don’t want to be responsible for the severe and possibly fatal disease of an older or vulnerable Australian.”

“We have to all, in every aspect of our life, practise social distancing and good hygiene. These measures have to be our routine. We have to live very very differently.”

“Please, every one of us has to do our bit. We can control, we can contain and we can help to flatten the curve, but every Australian has to play their role in doing this.”

Watch the press conference below.


For links to get trusted updates on the COVID-19 pandemic click here.

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At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.



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