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Coronavirus Information – English

Updated: 06/04/2020

Click here for Latest health advice from the Australian Government Department of Health

Click here for International updates

Click here for translated news updates and articles on coronavirus

Protecting ourselves and our communities

Everyone needs to play a part to stop the spread of coronavirus. This is especially important for people who are old or have health conditions. Everyone must practice good hygiene and social distancing.

Click here for a guide on good hygiene that can be printed.

Watch this video for information on how to protect yourself

Social distancing can help stop or slow the spread of the virus. It means less physical contact between you and other people.1

To practice social distancing:
  • Stay at home if you can, especially if you are sick
  • You should only leave home:
    • To shop for food/essentials
    • For medical reasons such a visiting the doctor/ hospital
    • Exercise
    • Work or study (if you can't work/ study at home)
  • If you have to leave your home, keep 1.5 metres between you and other people
  • Do not hug, shake hands or kiss people
  • Avoid touching things like door handles or elevator buttons

The government has announced that gatherings of more than 2 people are not allowed. This means most people are staying home and not going out much. The two-person limit does not apply to people who usually live with you. But gatherings with other friends or family, outdoor or indoors, are not allowed. In many states, if you break this rule you could get a fine from police.

Some state governments have stricter rules. Click on the links below to find rules for your state:

New South Wales
Victoria
Queensland
South Australia
Western Australia
Tasmania
ACT
Northern Territory
Some people need to stay at home for now.2 For example:
  • People who have been diagnosed with the virus
  • People who have been in contact with someone who has the virus
  • People who have recently been overseas
The government also strongly recommends to self isolate if you are:
  • over 70 years old
  • over 60 years old with health problems
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples over 50 years old with health problems
Self isolation means you must stay at home. This means:
  • Do not go to public places (work, school, shopping centres, childcare, university)
  • Ask someone to get food and other necessities and leave them at your door
  • Do not let visitors into your home

Click here for up to date information on who needs to self isolate

Do you have questions?

Click here for more information about the virus.

Call the Coronavirus Health Information line if you have questions. If you need an interpreter:
  1. Call 131 450
  2. Then ask for the Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080

Are you okay?

It can be stressful and lonely at times like these. Make sure you talk to your family and community by phone and video!

If you need extra support, click here for some useful information.

If you need urgent mental health support call Lifeline. If you need an interpreter:
  1. Call 131 450
  2. Then request Lifeline on 13 11 14

Helping your community and neighbours

There are many ways we can help those in our community. Simple things could be a big help. For example, bringing groceries to someone's house, picking up their medication or calling them to check in.
  1. Print a few copies of the card below
  2. Write your name and contact details
  3. Select all the ways you can help
  4. Coronavirus can be spread by touching surfaces. After you fill in the postcards, please wait 24 hours before delivering them. This is for hygiene reasons.
  5. Make sure you wash your hands before giving them out or wear gloves
  6. Take the cards to your community. You can hand them out or put them in mailboxes
  7. Wash your hands or wear gloves before delivering anything. While you are delivering anything, avoid touching surfaces like doorhandles for hygiene reasons.
If you are unwell, have tested positive for the virus, or come in contact with someone who does, do not deliver any goods or cards.

We can still meet the needs of people in our community while following the latest health guidelines and social distancing rules. Before you begin, check the latest social distancing rules in your state (see under 'What is Social Distancing' heading)

Click here to download postcard

Government support

The government has said they will help people.
The government is introducing extra payments of $550 per fortnight for some people on income support. Also more people are now eligible to receive income support.3
To see if you are eligible, and find out more, click here

If you receive income support or hold a concession card you may get $750 from the government. Some people are eligible for a total of $1500 over two payments.4
To find out more, click here

You may experience long wait times when contacting Centrelink

The Government has also announced that some people may be able to access their superannuation fund early if they need to.5

WARNING: For most people this should only be a last option. Using money out of your retirement savings now, will result in much lower savings in the future
The government are helping businesses in a few ways – such as cash payments, guaranteed loans, and payments to keep apprentices, trainees and other staff in work.6
To find out more, click here.

JobKeeper payment7
The government has introduced the JobKeeper payment to help businesses keep paying their staff.

This payment is $1500 per fortnight, per employee, for up to 6 months. This includes full-time, part-time and casual employees.

To get this support, you must be eligible and you must make an application to the Australian Tax Office (ATO).
To find out more, click here.
Click here to apply for support through the ATO
The government may release more support over the coming months. To get the most up to date information, visit their social media pages.

These government payments are currently not available to many people on temporary visas. More must be done to protect over 1 million migrants who need urgent help.8
Click here to sign our petition to support temporary migrants.

Problems with work

If you're facing problems at work, the Migrant Workers Centre can help. For example, if you are a permanent or part time employee and have been fired without valid reason, have been made redundant without pay, or forced to sign a new contract.

You can contact them via this link.
JobKeeper payment 9
The government has introduced a payment for people who have lost work because of the coronavirus situation. This is called the JobKeeper payment and you may be able to get it through your employer.

To get this support you must have worked with your company for 1 year and your company must be eligible to receive payments.

Payments will start in May.

Contact your employer to find out if you can get this payment.
To find out more click here

If you were already unemployed, or have recently lost your job and you're looking for work, you may be eligible for more income support.10

To find out more click here

These government payments are currently not available to many people on temporary visas. More must be done to protect over 1 million migrants who need urgent help.11
Click here to sign our petition to support temporary migrants.

Evictions

If you are renting but can't afford to pay your rent in the next 6 months, your landlord cannot evict you.12

If they try, you should contact your local tenant's rights group – that you can find here:
New South Wales
Victoria
Queensland
South Australia
Western Australia
Tasmania
ACT
Northern Territory

School Closures and Updates

Each state has different rules around school closures. Many schools are moving to online learning, or starting school holidays early to help stop the spread of coronavirus. Some schools are having 'student free' days – this means your child does not need to attend school. Some schools are still open for those students whose parents are still working.13

Click on the links below to find information about your states, or contact your child's school directly
New South Wales
Victoria
Queensland
South Australia
Western Australia
Tasmania
ACT
Northern Territory

More Information and Resources

You can find more translated information and resources on the following websites:

Ethnolink
Victorian Government Health Translations
New South Wales Government resources
Victorian Government resources
Migrant Workers Centre
Enliven
[1] Social distancing Guidance – Australian Government Department of Health
[2] Isolation Guidance – Australian Government Department of Health
[3] Fact Sheet: Economic Response to the coronavirus, Payments to support households - Australian Government
[4] Fact Sheet: Economic Response to the coronavirus, Income support for individuals – Australian Government
[5] Fact Sheet: Economic Response to the coronavirus, Early Access to Superannuation – Australian Government
[6] Support for businesses– The Treasury, Australian Government
[7] Fact Sheet: Economic Response to the coronavirus, supporting businesses to retain jobs –Australian Government
[8]'Left with nothing': Australia's migrant workforce face destitution without coronavirus safety net',The Guardian, 1 April 2020
[9] Fact Sheet: Economic Response to the coronavirus, supporting businesses to retain jobs –Australian Government
[10] Fact Sheet: Economic Response to the coronavirus, Income support for individuals – Australian Government
[11] 'Left with nothing': Australia's migrant workforce face destitution without coronavirus safety net',The Guardian, 1 April 2020
[12] "Landlords face six-month eviction freeze", Australian Financial Review, 29 March 2020
[13] "States announce pupil-free days and early term breaks as they prepare for distance learning during coronavirus pandemic", abc, 26 March 2020
This page has been translated by Colour Code volunteers, based on government resources. We try to update the page regularly, but for the most up to date information, please follow the links provided to the official government pages.

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