NSW COVID-19 Vaccination Rates hit 80% - Sport & Recreation Update
Posted: Mon, 18th Oct 2021
Current as at 18th October 2021
Over the weekend we received the fantastic news that NSW has hit 80% double vaccination rates. Starting from Monday 18th of October, restrictions have once again changed to ease restrictions for the following people:
a) Fully vaccinated people aged 16 years and over;
b) Children under the age of 16; and
c) People who have been issued with a medical contraindication certificate compliant with the Order.
Clause 2.13 of the Public Health Order, which previously referenced outdoor sport and exercise gatherings, has been removed. This means community sport and exercise falls under the general restrictions for outdoor events and is now permitted to take place (including both training and competition).
Yes, that means we can resume rally days and full competition with a few restrictions.
The maximum number of persons in an outdoor area must not exceed more than 1 person per 2 square metres of space.
The maximum number of persons permitted at the following outdoor events are;
a) for a controlled outdoor public gathering – 3,000 persons (e.g. fenced, seated or ticketed events – generally not Pony Club Events)
b) for a COVID-19 safe outdoor public gathering – 1000 persons (e.g. large rallies or competitions with a COVID-19 Safe Plan in place)
c) for any other outdoor public gathering – 50 persons (e.g. small rallies and competitions)
These restrictions apply to any community sport (including both training and competition), exercise and recreation activities. They also apply for outdoor events such as club BBQs and end of year presentations.
In other words, for outdoor events to host 51-1000 people, you must have a current COVID-19 Safe Plan in place. For smaller events with 50 people or less, this is not required, however Pony Club NSW strongly advises that clubs have a COVID-19 Safe Plan in place. Register as a COVID-19 Safe Business and complete your Safety Plan here. There is no reference to restrictions overnight stays in the Public Health Order, however all guidelines must be strictly enforced if you are allowing overnight stays.
To apply for an exemption to host a gathering in excess of the above numbers, please click here.
Fitted Face Coverings
Remember to carry a face mask with you at all times. The following rules and restrictions remain in place regarding the wearing of fitted face coverings (ie. face masks);
a) A person who is over 12 years of age must wear a fitted face covering over both their nose and mouth while in any indoor area of non-residential premises (ie. Canteen, clubhouse, bathrooms etc.)
Removing fitted face coverings:
a) A person may remove a fitted face covering if the person is engaging in strenuous physical activity, except in an indoor area as part of a gym class or dance class.
b) The person must resume wearing the fitted face covering as soon as practical after the strenuous physical activity ends.
Travel for Recreation
Travel between Greater Sydney and Regional NSW will not be permitted until 1 November.
Therefore, a person who resides in Greater Sydney must not participate in recreation outside Greater Sydney, and a person who resides outside of Greater Sydney (ie. Regional NSW) must not participate in recreation in Greater Sydney.
Keep in mind for those on the edge of Greater Sydney/Regional NSW, that your membership insurance covers you to ride at any Pony Club. A club that is close to you but within your region may allow you to participate as a guest whilst restrictions are in place. Find clubs near you here.
Volunteer organisers of your club rallies and events are working hard to facilitate events for members. As a participant, it is up to you to make sure you are doing the right thing by your fellow members, volunteers, and the general public. If you do not comply with the Public Health Orders, large penalties can apply. When you go to Pony Club events, be sure to:
- Check in with the Service NSW app or provide your contact details to the occupier. If requested, it is appreciated if you show proof of vaccination. If you do not, the event organiser may turn you away or ask for police assistance. Carry vaccination evidence with you and produce it for inspection to a police officer or authorised officer if requested.
- Check in with the Service NSW app or provide your contact details to the occupier.
- Treat your volunteers and fellow members with kindness and respect.
For Event Organisers
You are responsible for taking reasonable steps to prevent unvaccinated people entering your event.
Reasonable steps may include:
- Ensure posters outlining vaccination requirements and Service NSW QR codes are clearly visible.
- Train volunteers on ways to check proof of COVID-19 vaccination status (or a valid exemption) and what to do if someone refuses to be checked or is not vaccinated.
- Remind participants of vaccination requirements in marketing materials and when taking and confirming entries.
- Consider ways for non-vaccinated members to participate online.
- Checking vaccination status upon entry where practical.
If the occupier of the premises believes that a person does not have a valid exemption, the occupier can ask the person to leave the premises. If the person refuses, the occupier of the premises can notify the police.
Clubs and residents in the ACT are under restrictions for community sport until the 29th of October, including a maximum of 25 people (excluding staff) or 1 per 4m2 (whichever is less), until the 29th of October. Further updates will be released after the 29th of October for the ACT. Read the ACT roadmap here.
Pony Club NSW directs clubs to use the “get in, train/compete, get out” model, whereby time spent at the event is limited. Some other safety management considerations may include: limiting support personnel and spectators, limiting dining facilities, encouraging take-away catering, and limiting activities where riders come into close contact or exchange equipment. Updated risk assessment templates for club use will be available in the coming days.
Pony Club NSW understands that these restrictions will be in place until the indicated date of 1st of December (with the exception of travel for recreation). We will provide updates as they are available. We thank you for your ongoing patience and support whilst we navigate the ever-changing COVID-19 landscape.