After the state of emergency, the government of Victoria has enabled the "state of disaster" in the metropolis of Melbourne, the second largest city of Australia. Despite a gradual tightening of sanitary measures, since July, the number of cases of Covid-19 continues to increase, while the country had hitherto been rather spared by the pandemic.
Victoria had been up to 723 cases per day in the last week of July, the number dropped to 439 Tuesday 4 August. On 12 335 cases detected since the beginning of the health crisis, 6 706 are still active. This State of the south-east of Australia is by far the most affected of the country : it has a total of 147 deaths in the Covid-19 since the beginning of the year, on a national total of 232.
Mask obligatory in the street
The reversal of the epidemic has led to the Premier of Victoria, Daniel Andrews, to reconfiner Melbourne from the 8th July to try to avoid a second wave. The cafes and restaurants in particular had had to again close, as the beauty institutes. "I had booked in the restaurant on the 7th July for our 34 years of marriage, tells the Point Serge, a French installed in Melbourne for nearly 40 years. That day at noon, they announced their closure. Finally, we had to take an order to go and we made it to the house. "
Read also Coronavirus : Australia, Melbourne again has to be confined
Since the 22nd of July, the inhabitants of Melbourne must also wear a mask permanently as soon as they leave their homes, at the risk of being fined 200 australian dollars. "It is rather well respected, even if there is a small movement of complotistes who refuse to wear it ", noted Serge and his wife, Patricia.
Since the 22nd of July, the inhabitants of Melbourne are required to wear a mask when they leave their home. © Speed Media/Shutterstock/SIPA / SHUTTERSTOCK / Speed Media//SIPA
Closing the shops on non-essential
As at the beginning of the health crisis prior to the first containment, these ads have sparked a panic. "People have thrown themselves on the toilet paper, but also on the meat [of the slaughterhouses will have to lower their production after the occurrence of several clusters, ED.], describe Serge and Patricia. They had to limit purchases ! "
The First minister Daniel Andrews has also ordered the closure of all the shops on non-essential and administrations as from Thursday 6 August. The people who still have to get to their place of work will be required to have a permit issued by their employer. Employee in the telecommunications industry, Serge is working at home from the 25th of march. "I have been able to return to a few weeks, but working at home becomes mandatory. "
Each week, his company asked him to ask a day off to cope with the reduction in activity. "I have a lot of seniority so I have days of advances, but my young colleagues have to take unpaid leave. "The State offers a financial assistance, which was extended until 2021, but the situation of the workers remains precarious. Not to mention those who have lost their jobs in the crisis.
The army was called in reinforcement to Melbourne to help the police to monitor the observance of the rules of the reconfinement. © WILLIAM WEST / AFP
The army has even been called to the rescue to ensure that people who test positive for the coronavirus remain at home. These last few days, 800 people controlled by the police were not among them. The fine was increased to 5 000 to be more deterrent.
The reconfinement is difficult for the inhabitants of the region, who thought that the worst of the pandemic was behind them. "We were able to go back to a life near-normal with a relaxation of restrictions, the reopening of bars and restaurants... Our son has a baby of 19 months, they live only a few kilometers, but we have not been able to see them since march," laments Serge. Consolation, winter is rough for a few days at Melbourne. "Today it's raining and he has not had to make more than 6 degrees. With a time like that, one has less desire to go outside. "