The roadmap for regional NSW, and indeed the Dubbo Region, to re-open is well-advanced after the state reached its vaccination goal and everyone is looking forward to a return to some familiar ‘normalities’. While the finish line to the current extended lockdowns and stay at home orders is in sight, the roadmap everyone will need to work to requires a ‘one team’ effort to make it a true success.

“Since COVID-19 first affected Australia in 2020, governments have told us all, ‘we’re in this together’, and that still rings true,” said Dubbo Region Mayor, Councillor Stephen Lawrence. “Council has stood shoulder to shoulder with the community, and both the NSW and Australian Government, to combat COVID-19. And as we enter the recovery phase for our region as our services and facilities emerge from lockdown, it will take a ‘one team’ effort between the community and Council for reopening to be a success.”

With ever-evolving Public Health Orders issued by the NSW Government, and tweaks made to the comprehensive roadmap out of lockdown, Council will need to move and comply with those orders and plans as they change. To help make reopening a success across the region, community leaders are urging everyone to be patient, respectful, kind, and flexible as much-missed elements of ‘normal’ return to daily life.

“So many of Council’s services and facilities will reopen, even more over the coming days and weeks. In doing so, Council is following the NSW Government’s Public Health Orders and COVIDSafe rules to absolutely ensure the safety of the community, visitors and Council staff,” said Councillor Lawrence. “It’s a critical time for the community to familiarise themselves with, and understand, the COVID requirements for the various individual Council facilities and services. It’s also a critical time for us all to work as one team to ensure we don’t get ourselves put back into restrictions… no one wants that, especially families, our region’s struggling businesses and attractions.”

For example, the Dubbo Aquatic Leisure Centre is currently open (with COVIDSafe restrictions) to everyone. However, under the NSW Government Public Health Order, only fully vaccinated people can access the Council-operated facility from Monday 11 October until restrictions ease further on 1 December 2021. Similarly, under the NSW Government’s Public Health Order, Council facilities that reopen from 11 October will require proof of vaccination prior to entry, until restrictions ease further on 1 December 2021 to include access by those in the community who remain unvaccinated.

“The reality is, these government orders and requirements can change at a moment’s notice, and business and Council will need to comply and act very quickly,” said Councillor Lawrence. “The best way to manage that change is for people to firstly, be aware that things may change, keep regularly informed on current requirements, and work as one team to move and change with Council and businesses when and if we have to change.”

“The aim of opening up with high and ever-increasing vaccination numbers is to get Australia back to ‘normal’, so we can move freely, visit family, shop, go to the pub, eat in restaurants, take holidays and eventually travel beyond our borders. We’ve all worked so hard to get to this point, and we need to keep going to ensure what we’ve worked hard for stays. Importantly, we stick to it so more and more of what’s normal returns.”

People are strongly urged to visit to learn about the requirements for each Council service and facility; and are strongly urged to be patient and flexible when visiting Council facilities or accessing Council services.

Last Edited: 08 Oct 2021

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