Rightly or wrongly, there appears to be some confusion about what people can and cannot do as coronavirus restrictions start to be wound back. Despite the state government's best efforts to clearly stipulate the stages at which certain day-to-day life limitations will be lifted, it appears many people have missed the mark. Further, many seem to be letting hearsay cloud factual information.
The Examiner has published multiple checklists and stories on what people can do during stage one of the easing restrictions, which came into effect on Monday. This information is also readily available on the Tasmanian Health Service website. Yet undoubtedly many are still taking what they read on social media or what a friend-of-a-friend has said as gospel. It is incredibly important Tasmanians access this information for themselves.
When restrictions were first introduced, Premier Peter Gutwein made it clear that common sense would be our best weapon. As we ease back into normality, this remains as relevant as ever.
Yes there are some grey areas, with some obvious hints of hypocrisy. For instance, people can only visit national parks 30 kilometres from their primary residence, but can visit a loved one anywhere in the state with no more than five visitors allowed at one time. But the government's objective shouldn't be unnecessarily overthought. They are simply trying to stop people from flooding to Cradle Mountain, for example, when they're just looking for something to do. While you can gather in public spaces with 10 other people, is it always necessary? Do you need to go to Kmart to buy a new pair of shoes? As Mr Gutwein has said, if a place is crowded or it does not feel right - don't go into the store.
All non-essential travel should still be limited until more lenient stages two and three come into effect on June 15 and July 13, respectfully. All social activities are allowed with the expectation that people will continue to wash their hands regularly, stay 1.5 metres apart, and isolate themselves and arrange testing for the coronavirus if they have the symptoms of a cold. Just exercise caution and good common sense.