NSW Premier issues ‘strong recommendation’ for masks, including for public transport, shopping

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NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has issued a “strong recommendation” that people wear masks in four key circumstances, as she continues to warn that the state is in a “critical” stage.

She said people should wear a mask in enclosed spaces such as on public transport or buying groceries; while working in customer-facing roles in hospitality or retail; when attending a place of worship; and if people were in an area of high community transmission.

“I want to stress it is not compulsory, but it is a strong recommendation from Health, given where we are in the pandemic, given the risk posed from Victoria and given the rate of community transmission in New South Wales,” she said.

“Where you are in an enclosed space and you cannot guarantee social distancing, you should be wearing a mask.”

“These are recommendations to keep all of us safe and they’re recommendations to make sure we keep New South Wales in the position we are in.

“I cannot stress enough how critical the next few weeks are.”

Ms Berejiklian said it was a continuing part of the state’s “risk mitigation strategy” particularly in the face of what was happening in Victoria, despite the borders being closed.

“While Victoria is in the situation it is in, it automatically puts us at risk, because we know no matter how strict you are at the borders, no border is complete, nobody is impenetrable, as Queensland themselves have found out this week as well,” she said.

“We cannot pretend we are geographically separated from Victoria. We are not.”

NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant said wearing masks was the “‘fourth line of defence” after staying home if sick, social distancing and hand hygiene.

NSW recorded 12 new cases in the 24 hours to 8:00pm last night.

More to come.

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