Birthday revellers at a CBD venue, and people at a Dandenong factory religious meeting, are the latest to be fined for violating Victoria’s COVID-19 laws.
Police minister Lisa Neville called out “appalling” actions when she revealed 170 fines were issues on Sunday in the 24-hour period up to 10 am, totalling over $300,000.
Prime Minister Daniel Andrews has proclaimed Victoria a state of emergency with a curfew enforced in Melbourne from 8 pm.
Police will have extra authority to impose lockout laws in a state of emergency starting on Sunday night. Protective services officers who would usually patrol public transport at night would be released before limits are enforced.
“This really puts beyond doubt their powers. It ensures they have the right tools they need to enforce all the directives and ensure compliance with those directives,” Ms Neville said.
“We’ve all got to take this seriously, and most people are, but as I said yesterday some people are showing appalling behaviour. In order to get on top of the spread … we need all Victorians to do the right thing.”
As Victoria ‘s active COVID-19 cases reached 6000 on Saturday, a prisoner detention centre connected to the Melbourne Magistrates Court and police and correction officers were shut down after two workers contracted the virus.
Prisoners were transferred to the centre after Saturday’s two new cases were reported to the police.
A police spokesperson said the building was briefly locked up and will be deep-cleaned.
“We are also working together, alongside the Department of Health and Human Services, to conduct contact tracing to determine whether anyone else from Victoria Police or inside the centre was in close contact with the two people who tested positive,” the spokeswoman said.
“The community can be assured that Victoria Police’s service delivery will remain unaffected during this time.”