Following the Premier’s announcement that WA will enter a Safe Transition Plan, including public health measures, from 5 February 2022, I’m sure many of you will have questions on the impact to your sports.
This week, along with DLGSC representatives, I attended a roundtable discussion on the Safe Transition Plan with the Chief Health Officer, the Department of Premier and Cabinet and representatives from other industries.
I have captured some of the key discussion points from the meeting below and will be seeking further clarification on a range of items over the coming weeks.
I appreciate these points may instigate more questions than answers. If you have specific questions, I’d encourage you to email them through to Grant Trew at DLGSC on the following email address firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, you are more than welcome to contact me with questions.
We will endeavour to provide more detailed information over the coming weeks however, below is a summary of the key discussion points.
- Along with high vaccination rates, public health measures are very important to minimise the expected community transmission of COVID post the transition on 5 February 2022.
- Masks on public transport, proof of vaccination at high-risk areas are some of these measures.
- We can expect that measures such as self-quarantining for close contacts of cases will be introduced.
- COVID event check lists will be required for events with between 500 – 999 patrons and/or participants.
- COVID event plans will be required for events of more than 1,000 patrons and/or participants.
- Templates for COVID event check lists and event plans are currently being updated.
- The definition of events will be consistent with current definitions: https://www.wa.gov.au/system/files/2021-12/20211201-COVID-Safe-Phase-5-Directions-No2.pdf
- Only people aged 16 and above will be required to show proof of vaccination in circumstances where it is required.
- There will be two methods to prove vaccination:
- Hard copy certificate or certificate in a digital wallet – in these circumstances a form of ID will be required as well (eg. driver’s license); OR
- Via a new app the State Government will launch in early January that will integrate SafeWA check-in features and vaccination verification.
- For events of more than 1,000 people including participants, officials and spectators you will be required to verify vaccination status. We have raised and will follow-up on a number of questions relating to this point.
- The requirements, including the frequency and method, on event organisers to sight proof of vaccination will vary depending on if the event is ticketed and if the event site/venue has a controlled or uncontrolled entry point.
- It’s worth considering that participants may not know if your event is going to have more than 1,000 people, so early communication of the proof of vaccination requirement will be critical.
- Additional restrictions may be required in some at risk regional communities where current projections suggest higher levels of vaccination may take longer to achieve.
- If those regions do not reach at least an 80 per cent double dose vaccination by 5 February 2022, they will be subject to temporary enhanced public health and social measures.
- All organisations should review the information available at: https://www.wa.gov.au/government/announcements/wa-proceed-safe-transition-plan-february-5-2022
In addition to these pending health measures, it’s worth reconfirming that mandatory vaccination for categories of workers have now started to come into play. The most common listed occupations within the sport sector relate to hospitality, maintenance workers and workers/volunteers attending schools or indigenous communities.
Other businesses may also choose to have proof of vaccination requirements as a condition of entry to protect their staff and patrons.
Organisations are strongly advised to seek their own legal advice based on their own their individual circumstances before adopting a proof of vaccination requirement.
We have been advised that frequently asked questions will continue to be rolled out as soon as possible. Between SportWest and DLGSC, we will keep you updated but feel free to send questions through if you have any.
By. Matt Fulton, Chief Executive Officer, SportWest
Date: 16 December, 2021