Penalties foreshadowed for NSW businesses that refuse to check vaccination status

Anton NilssonNCA NewsWire
Not Supplied
Camera IconNot Supplied Credit: News Corp Australia

NSW pub owners who refuse to check the vaccination status of customers could face heavy fines, a state minister has foreshadowed.

Once pubs open up again, they will only welcome fully vaccinated people.

The reopening is set to happen when NSW manages to fully vaccinate 70 per cent of its population against coronavirus.

But businesses will need to make sure customers have been vaccinated before allowing them in, and business owners who refuse should expect penalties, according to Customer Service Minister Victor Dominello.

The schooner (L) and the British pint compared in The Magdala pub in North London, England. It is now legal to serve beer in the schooner size in British pubs.
Camera IconThose who won’t get vaccinated will not be welcome at the pub. Credit: Supplied

“There should be serious sanctions applied if somebody wilfully wants to breach those orders,” he told the 2GB radio station on Monday.

“I imagine the police would be very strong on this, and they’d be up before the magistrate before they know it.”

Mr Dominello also said he believed staff would be able to sue an employer who failed to protect their safety by allowing non-vaccinated customers in.

Fully vaccinated people will be able to take advantage of a long list of eased restrictions from the Monday after the state hits the 70 per cent target, which is projected to happen in mid-October.

Service NSW, which is overseen by Mr Dominello, is hoping to roll out a combined check-in app and vaccine passport by then.

That would allow patrons to flash their vaccination status automatically when registering their presence at a venue with a QR code.

Once the rules ease, pubs and other hospitality venues, retail stores and gyms will be subject to the 4sq m rule indoors, meaning each person will need at least that amount of space to themselves.

Camera IconNSW Customer Service Minister Victor Dominello said he expected penalties to apply. NCA NewsWire/Joel Carrett Credit: News Corp Australia

People drinking outdoors at pubs will be subject to a 2sq m rule and will be allowed to stand up.

Unvaccinated people will only be able to access “critical retail” stores. Those are the stores and businesses that are already open during the lockdown.

Hairdressers and beauty salons will have a five-person cap on the premises.

Gyms can offer classes to up to 20 people, and sporting facilities like swimming pools will be able to reopen.

Getting vaccinated against Covid-19 has been proven to significantly reduce the risk of serious illness and death from the disease and can even reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus.

Originally published as Penalties foreshadowed for NSW businesses that refuse to check vaccination status

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