Western Australia (WA) Premier Mark McGowan has unveiled the “broadest proof of vaccination requirements in the nation,” with almost every indoor venue and most events only to allow fully vaccinated from Jan. 31.
More than one in ten West Australians aged 16 and over are not fully vaccinated and will be affected by the measures. It comes as WA prepares to ease border restrictions from Feb. 5 for vaccinated individuals wanting to travel interstate.
The restrictions will be mandated for a range of facilities, including fitness centres, bottle shops, dine-in eating, entertainment venues, and more. West Australians will also need to be vaccinated to visit family at hospitals.
“Life will be very difficult for the unvaccinated from January 31,” McGowan warned in a Jan.13 Facebook post, shortly after using a slur against residents refusing to show proof of vaccination on Jan. 6 and echoing the same message on Jan. 10.
“No pub, no bottle shop, no gym, no yoga class, no gigs, no dance floors, no hospital visits.”
WA has also mandated vaccinations, including booster shots, for 75 percent of the state’s workforce—equivalent to over a million workers—by the same day on Jan. 31, a move which some estimates place the cost in the billions of dollars, leaving tens of thousands unemployed.
Venues and events exempt from the ban are now limited and include retail, supermarkets, libraries, hairdressers, and community sport and school-based events. Those who are sick may also still make an appointment with a GP or doctor.
The exact blacklist includes:
- Visitors to public and private hospitals, and aged care facilities;
- All hospitality venues, including restaurants, cafes, bars, pubs, clubs, taverns, night clubs and dine-in fast food (roadhouses, service stations, and takeaway is exempt);
- Indoor entertainment venues, including play centres, gaming and gambling, theatres, concert halls, museums, cinemas and live music venues;
- Bottle shops;
- The entire Crown Perth complex;
- Major stadiums;
- Gyms, fitness centres and health studios;
- Amusement parks and the zoo; and
- Music festivals and large events with more than 500 people, unless exempt.
McGowan accused those who chose not to get vaccinated of putting fellow West Australians at greater risk.
“If you choose to remain unvaccinated, and at this point, it’s certainly a choice. You’re choosing to put yourself at risk, you’re choosing to put the people around you at risk, and you’re choosing to increase the burden on our health staff,” he said.
However, growing evidence indicates that currently available vaccines may prove ineffective against the latest Omicron variant of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus.
In particular, the Pfizer chief executive has said that “two doses of the (existing) vaccine offer limited protection, if any,” with the World Health Organization backing this point, suggesting current vaccines must be reworked to offer protection against Omicron and possible future COVID-19 variants.
This has been supported by recent hospitalisation figures in New South Wales, with the state reporting more fully vaccinated admitting to hospital for COVID-19 than those who were unvaccinated.
The announcement by McGowan was overwhelmingly met by anger from some commenters on the Facebook post, some of whom raised concerns of possible adverse impacts on a significant portion of the state’s unvaccinated residence.
In particular, concerns have been raised that new measures could impact the physical and mental wellbeing of more than one-tenth of West Australians who cannot attend gyms or join social events.
The Epoch Times reached out to the WA government to enquire about the state’s stance on vaccine efficacy against Omicron, and to ask whether a risk-benefit analysis had been conducted over the new vaccine requirements, but did not receive a reply in time for publication.