Some businesses must deny entry to city visitors

Business owners outside metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire who run a business that is restricted inside these areas must use reasonable endeavours to satisfy themselves that their customers do not live in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire.
Business owners outside metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire who run a business that is restricted inside these areas must use reasonable endeavours to satisfy themselves that their customers do not live in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire.

SALE'S Mister Raymond eatery has taken to social media to advise customers that it will be denying entry to people from metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire.

"We will be adding the taking of postcodes to our COVID admin and may require proof of residence by way of ID (driver's license)," it advised.

"We are still able to seat 20 people from regional Victoria."

The denial of entry by businesses to those from the lockdown zones seems to be a little-known requirement under new directives.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services website, business owners outside metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire who run a business that is restricted inside these areas "have additional responsibilities".

"These business owners must use reasonable endeavours to satisfy themselves that their customers do not live in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire," it states.

"This can be confirmed using a driver's license or other relevant forms of ID.

Dining establishments will continue to be required to record the name and phone number of customers and staff who stay longer than 15 minutes.

Michelle Ross at Sale's popular Redd Catt restaurant told the Gippsland Times she became aware of the new requirement at the weekend, but was certain her staff had been following the new rules.

"We know about 99 per cent of our customers, and if we don't recognise them we engage them in conversation to establish where they are from and ensure all the COVID requirements are met," she said.

"On Saturday we had one family from Melbourne who were returning home from holiday.

"They established where they had been holidaying and where they were returning to.

"So all the record-keeping was done.

"Especially people we don't know, we talk to."

Victoria Police can issue on-the-spot fines of up to $1652 for individuals and up to $9913 for businesses for refusing or failing to comply with the emergency directions, refusing or failing to comply with a public health risk power direction or refusing or failing to comply with a direction by the Chief Health Officer to provide information.

Fines of up to $20,000 for individuals and $100,000 for businesses are possible through the court system.

If you want to report a suspected breach of public health restrictions, such as isolation, a mass gathering or business breaches, phone the Police Assistance Line on 131 444 or report online at onlinereporting.police.vic.gov.au/s/covid19.

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