Victorians know all too well: this virus moves fast. It's why, as a state, we need to move faster.
On the advice of our public health team, and from 11.59pm 1 January 2021, Victoria will close its borders to New South Wales.
This is not an easy choice – and certainly not one we wanted to make on a day that’s supposed to be about celebrating.
But we know this is the right decision if we’re to protect everything Victorians have worked so hard to achieve.
Under the changes, any Victorian currently in the Green Zone will have until 11.59pm tomorrow night to come home.
This does not include Victorians in the Blue Mountains City Council and Wollongong City Council local government areas, who must apply for a new permit and arrive before 11.59pm tonight.
Any Victorian, regardless of where they’re arriving from in New South Wales, will need to get tested and then quarantine for 14 days upon arriving in our state.
Unfortunately, that means no going to work, no trips to the supermarket or visits to the local park. That's a big sacrifice. But as we've seen in recent days, it's integral to keeping our state safe.
For those in our border communities, we understand that you need to be able to travel in between New South Wales and Victoria, and we will have a process in place to allow that to happen. Details will be confirmed shortly.
We also understand this will have implications for those who are travelling through New South Wales from other part of our nation. For those this applies to, we’ll also have more to say about our arrangements soon.
Existing provisions for freight, domestic air crews, those exiting mandatory quarantine, medical care and emergency services will remain the same.
Authorised Officers will continue to monitor arrivals at our airports, and our hardworking Victoria Police officers will continue to guard our state's borders.
These changes are in addition to those announced earlier today, limiting the number of people who can visit your home each day to 15, in addition to making masks mandatory when indoors.
I know people are well and truly ready to be rid of this year, and this virus. But in taking it seriously, and acting quickly, we can stop its spread.
My message to Victorians: we’ve got this. By wearing our masks, limiting our gatherings and getting tested if we have any symptoms, we can squash this virus just like we have before.
And to our friends just north of the border – stay strong. We’ll see you soon.
Reviewed 31 December 2020