Andrews Scraps Melbourne's Mandatory Outdoor Mask Rule

Andrews Scraps Melbourne's Mandatory Outdoor Mask Rule
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews (L) arrives with Deputy Premier James Merlino during a press conference in Melbourne, Australia on Nov. 12, 2020. (Daniel Pockett/Getty Images)

Months of compulsory face mask-wearing will come to an end for Melburnians as part of a lifting of further COVID-19 restrictions.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews on Nov 22 announced the changes to take affect from midnight.

"Masks will be required inside in all settings, they will not be required while outside," he said.

"However you need to carry the mask with you because you will have to wear the mask outside if you can't socially distance."

Everyone in Melbourne has been required to wear compulsory face masks when outdoors since the city was struck by a second wave of coronavirus infections months ago.

This comes as a controlled randomized trial in Denmark found that wearing masks have no significant effect against SARS-CoV-2 infection. The study has revealed that more data is needed to support mask-wearing as a means to decrease the spread of the COVID-19.

Additional changes to restrictions include 15 home visitors per day, up from two. And outdoor public gatherings of up to 50 people will be allowed from Monday.

The significant change to social restrictions were announced as the state has one active COVID-19 case.

Andrews said that from Nov. 30 there will be further moves back to normality including up to 30 home visitors per day in time for Christmas.

Also, 25 percent of the Melbourne workforce will be permitted back in workplaces from Nov. 30. The remainder should continue working from home.

All public sector workers will continue working from home to allow private sector businesses to benefit.