Coronavirus Update #4

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The Winton Shire Council appreciates the cooperation from the community as we continue to implement controls to protect our community. We recognise that not everyone is on social media so we will continue to provide you with regular written updates, however for those people that are familiar with mobile devices, we recommend that you download the official government “Coronavirus Australia” app in the Apple App Store or Google Play, or join the WhatsApp channel on iOS or Android.

Please Stay Home

The advice to all Australians is to stay home unless it is absolutely necessary to go outside. You are permitted to leave home for the essentials, such as:

  • shopping for food or essential goods and services,
  • engaging in exercise (no more than two people if from different households),
  • going out for medical appointments or to the pharmacy,
  • providing care or support to another person in a place other than your home,
  • going to work if you cannot work from home,
  • attending court or comply with an order, and
  • attending an educational institution.

Steps for social distancing in all homes include:

  • keeping visitors to a minimum,
  • regularly disinfecting surfaces that are touched a lot, such as tables, kitchen benches, hand rails and doorknobs, and
  • increasing ventilation in the home by opening windows or adjusting air conditioning.

Social distancing in public means people:

  • stay at home and only go out if it is absolutely essential,
  • keep 1.5 metres away from others,
  • avoid physical greetings such as handshaking, hugs and kisses,
  • use tap and go instead of cash,
  • travel at quiet times and avoid crowds,
  • avoid public gatherings and at risk groups like older people, and
  • practise good hygiene.

Advice for Older Australians

In accordance with the measures announced by the Federal Government to protect older Australians from contracting the coronavirus (COVID-19), people who are aged over 70 should stay home and self-isolate and limit contact with others as much as possible. This also applies to people over 60 with chronic illness or Indigenous Australians over 50.

Council recommends that people aged 70 and over should stay at home and self-isolate for their own protection to the maximum extent practical. This does not mean that you cannot go outside for the purposes of getting some fresh air, and recreation, but steps should be taken to limit contact with others as much as possible for their own protection.

Keep in touch with others

You can still keep in touch with loved ones while you practise social distancing:

  • use video chats
  • make phone calls to people you would normally catch up with in person
  • use online groups to interact
  • chat with neighbours while keeping 1.5 metres apart

Are you OK?

Please check in with family and loved ones to make sure they are ok. People will have a wide range of responses to the unfolding COVID-19 situation. Support is available if you, or someone you know, are experiencing stress, anxiety, or any other challenging responses. You can arrange for a phone or video chat with counsellors or psychologists by calling 0417 703 729, email info@outbackfutures.org.au, or for further information on other support services available contact the Winton Neighbourhood Centre (4657 2680).

Financial Support

Financial support is available to support individual and families during this difficult time, please contact the Neighbourhood Centre or visit the Service Australia website for more information.

For information and assistance for businesses from the Queensland and Australian Governments visit: https://www.business.qld.gov.au/

JobKeeper Payment

The JobKeeper Payment is a subsidy to businesses, which will keep more Australians in jobs through the course of the coronavirus outbreak. The payment will be paid to employers, for up to six months, for each eligible employee that was on their books on 1 March 2020 and is retained or continues to be engaged by that employer.

Where a business has stood down employees since 1 March, the payment will help them maintain connection with their employees. Employers will receive a payment of $1,500 per fortnight per eligible employee. Every eligible employee must receive at least $1,500 per fortnight from this business, before tax.

The program will commence 30 March 2020, with the first payments to be received in the first week of May as monthly arrears from the Australian Taxation Office. Employers can register their interest in applying for the JobKeeper Payment via The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) from 30 March 2020. https://www.ato.gov.au/general/gen/JobKeeper-payment/.

Impacts to Council Services

The following facilities remain closed to the public:

  • Council Depot (access restricted to staff only for normal operational activities, phone and email enquiries from the public remain available),
  • Winton Pool,
  • Winton Gym,
  • Winton Library (home delivery available for online and phone orders),
  • 60’s & Better,
  • Waltzing Matilda Centre,
  • Outback Regional Gallery,
  • Visitor Information Services (phone and email enquiries from the public remain available),
  • Youth Centre,
  • Garden Club,
  • Winton Showgrounds,
  • Winton Shire Hall,
  • Eric Lenton Memorial Sports and Recreational Ground (open for independent exercise only
  • Patricia Bucknell Memorial Park Playground (park open for independent exercise only)
  • Hollow Log Park Playground (park open for independent exercise only)
  • Winton Skate Park
  • The Musical Fence

The following services will remain open:

  • Council Administrations Office (Phone and email enquiries are encouraged),
  • Winton Neighbourhood Centre (Phone and email enquiries are encouraged),
  • Aged and Disability Services, and
  • Little Swaggies Child Care

Key Contacts:

  • Winton Shire Council (4657 2666)
  • Winton Neighbourhood Centre (4657 2680)
  • Triple zero (000)
  • 13HEALTH (13 43 25 84)
  • Winton Hospital (4657 2700)
  • Winton Medical Practice (4657 2755)

For any questions or concerns regarding the above information please contact Jessica Greenaway, Director of Community and Economic Development on 4657 2666 or email JessicaG@winton.qld.gov.au.

Reducing risks for older australians
Health warning
Keeping your distance
Simple steps to help stop the spread