Coronavirus NSW restrictions update: Unvaccinated residents in NSW forced to wait weeks for freedoms under sweeping changes to COVID-19 roadmap


An updated NSW reopening roadmap has been revealed by Premier Dominic Perrottet that will see no caps on visitors to the home, indoor pools to reopen for all purposes and businesses move to density limits of one person for every two square metres from November 8 for the fully vaccinated.

But unvaccinated residents in New South Wales will have to wait until December 15 or until 95 percent vaccination rate in the state to enjoy the same freedoms.

Mr Perrottet said freedoms for unvaccinated residents that were due to be introduced on December 1 would now be pushed out.

Here’s everything we know about the changes to NSW’s reopening roadmap:

Dominic Perrottet has announced two major changes to NSW’s reopening roadmap.

1. More freedoms for vaccinated residents to take effect on November 8.

2. Delaying freedoms for unvaccinated residents until December 15.
Patrons return to the MCA Cafe (Museum of Contemporary Art Australia) on October 12, 2021 in Sydney, Australia. (Getty)

What are the new freedoms for NSW residents?

From November 8, if you are fully vaccinated you can enjoy the following freedoms:

– No cap on how many visitors you can have in your home

– Businesses will move to density limits of one person for every two square metres of floor space

– Indoor pools can reopen for all purposes (such as recreation)

– Nightclubs can reopen their dance floors

– Indoor halls can open for any purpose

– Outdoor gatherings of more than 1000 people will be required to have a COVID-safe plan

– Major stadiums can move to 100 per cent capacity
NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet said delaying freedoms for the unvaccinated was a form of incentive to get a COVID-19 vaccine. (Nine)

Is anything staying the same?

Yes. Despite a raft of easing restrictions, gym classes will remain capped at 20 people.

What about unvaccinated people? When can they enjoy the same freedoms?

Residents of NSW who are not fully vaccinated (including those who have only had one dose) will be given the same freedoms as the fully vaccinated on December 15.

Alternatively, the unvaccinated will be given the same freedoms as the fully vaccinated if NSW’s full vaccination rate hits 95 per cent prior to December 15.

Previously unvaccinated people were due to enjoy the same freedoms on December 1.

Anti-lockdown protest  on 24 July, 2021. Photo: Brook Mitchell
Freedoms for the unvaccinated will be pushed out to December 15, or when NSW hits a rate of 95 per cent fully vaccinated – whichever comes sooner. (Supplied)

What is NSW’s current vaccination rate?

Currently (as of November 2nd, 2021) NSW boasts a first-dose vaccination rate of 93.6 per cent and a second dose vaccination rate of 87.8 per cent.

What about face masks? Do I still need to wear a face mask in NSW if I’m fully vaccinated?

You do, in some settings.

The NSW government announced today that mandatory face masks in some indoor settings such as shopping centres and non-office indoor venues will remain until December 15.

Face masks will also remain mandatory on public transport, on aircraft and in indoor areas of common property in apartment buildings.

A busy Westfield Bondi Junction, Sydney.
Masks will remain mandatory in places such as shopping centres. (The Sydney Morning Herald)

What about QR codes? Will I still need to check in to places?

You will. No decision has been made yet on when (or if) QR codes will be phased out.

What if you have a medical exemption from receiving the vaccine?

Unvaccinated people who have a medical exemption can enjoy the same freedoms as those who are fully vaccinated.

Smiles and hugs as families are reunited in regional NSW

However when asked for vaccination evidence they must produce a medical contraindication certificate or a medical clearance form.

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