The Essential Vs Non-Essential Services List — What Is and Isn’t Open - 96five Family Radio

The Essential Vs Non-Essential Services List — What Is and Isn’t Open

Here is the list (to date) the Government has advised Australians of what we can and cannot participate in until further notice, in order to slow the spread of coronavirus. We encourage you to not take this list as a reason to panic but to think of it as measures our country, state and territory […]

By 96five Thursday 26 Mar 2020LifeReading Time: 7 minutes

Here is the list (to date) the Government has advised Australians of what we can and cannot participate in until further notice, in order to slow the spread of coronavirus. We encourage you to not take this list as a reason to panic but to think of it as measures our country, state and territory leaders are putting in place to try and protect Australians and our healthcare system in the long run.

However, we understand this is a very uncertain and anxious time for everyone and we have put together other resources to help you stay connected and supported throughout this difficult season including a faithful team of prayers.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison is urging people to stay at home unless it is “absolutely necessary to go out. Going out for the basics, going out for an exercise, perhaps with your partner or family members, provided it’s a small group, that’s fine”.

? Essential Services

That are allowed to operate during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic:

  • Emergency services
  • Pharmacies
  • Supermarkets
  • Schools — Queensland Schools are operating as per normal
  • Petrol stations
  • Food markets

? Non-Essential Services

That are NOT allowed to operate during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic:

  • Places of worship — visit our Online Church Directory to join or stay connected with a church community, all are welcome!
  • Beauty, nail, tanning, waxing and tattoo parlours
  • Spas, saunas, massage and wellness centres
  • Pubs, clubs, casinos, adult entertainment venues, hotel bar and restaurant areas
  • Auction houses, real estate auctions and open house inspections
  • Amusement parks and arcades
  • Play centres
  • Entertainment venues
  • Community and recreation centres such as halls and PCYCs
  • Health and fitness clubs including gyms, yoga, barre, spin, pilates
  • Sporting venues and swimming pools
  • Galleries, museums, national institutions, historic sites
  • Libraries
  • International travel (excluding essential travellers such as health workers, emergency services and freight of essential goods)
  • Cinemas
  • Family barbecues, birthday and house parties
  • Stadium and concert venues

?? Limited Services

During the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic — all observing the strict social distancing measures (1 person per 4m):

  • Cafes can provide take away only
  • 5 people allowed to attend a wedding — celebrant, the couple and two witnesses
  • 10 mourners will be allowed to attend a funeral
  • Family gatherings need to be limited
  • Food courts will only be able to serve take away
  • Hairdressers and barbers ***UPDATED March 26: Federal Government scrapped time limits
  • Bootcamps and personal training are limited to a maximum of 10 people
  • Hotel accommodation, excluding licensed bars and restaurant areas

? Additional Note

  • Hotels, hostels, bed and breakfasts, caravan and camping grounds, and boarding houses
  • outdoor and indoor markets (excluding food markets which are considered essential services)
  • More than 10 people attending a funeral — one or two additional family members might be able to attend under special circumstances
  • A moratorium on rental evictions — temporary bans on evictions for the next six months

? Update – March 31st

  • Latest Government Updates

Public gatherings, excluding household members, have been reduced to a maximum of two people. (With some exceptions. This limit does not apply to workplaces).

All Australians are required to stay home unless it is absolutely necessary to go outside.

Australians are permitted to leave home for the essentials, such as:

    • shopping for food
    • exercising outdoors, avoiding contact with other people
    • going out for medical needs
    • going to work if you cannot work from home.

People aged over 70, aged over 60 with pre-existing conditions, or Indigenous people aged over 50 should stay home wherever possible for their own protection.

All international travel is banned. Domestic travel is to be avoided. 14 day mandatory quarantine periods apply when arriving in Australia from overseas and when travelling interstate to some Australian states.

Queensland Home Confinement Direction

This direction applies to all residents of Queensland.

All people must stay in their homes except for:

  • shopping for essentials – food and necessary supplies;
  • medical or health care needs, including compassionate requirements;
  • exercise with no more than one other person (unless from your household);
  • providing care or assistance to an immediate family member;
  • work and study if you can’t work or learn remotely.

Direction from Chief Health Officer in accordance with emergency powers arising from the declared public health emergency

Public Health Act 2005 (Qld)

Section 362B

On 29 January 2020, under the Public Health Act 2005, the Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services made an order declaring a public health emergency in relation to coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The public health emergency area specified in the order is for ‘all of Queensland’. Its duration has been extended by regulation to 19 May 2020 and may be further extended.

Further to this declaration, l, Dr Jeannette Young, Chief Health Officer, reasonably believe it is necessary to give the following directions pursuant to the powers under s 362B of the Public Health Act 2005 to assist in containing, or to respond to, the spread of COVID-19 within the community.

Preamble and effect on previous Public Health Directions

  1. This Public Health Direction is to be read in conjunction with other Public Health Directions issued under section 362B of the Public Health Act 2005 that have not expired or been revoked.
  2. However, to the extent of any inconsistency, this Public Health Direction overrides any previous Public Health Direction issued under section 362B of the Public Health Act 2005.


  1. This Public Health Direction may be referred to as the Home confinement Direction.

PART 1 — DIRECTION – Home confinement requirements for residents of Queensland

  1. The purpose of this Part is to prohibit:
    1. persons from leaving their residence except for permitted purposes; and
    2. groups of more than two persons who are not members of the same household from gathering in any place except for permitted purposes.
  1. These directions apply from 11.59pm on Sunday, 29 March 2020, until the end of the declared public health emergency, unless they are revoked or replaced.
  2. A person who resides in Queensland must not leave their principal place of residence except for, and only to the extent reasonably necessary to accomplish, the following permitted purposes:
    1. to obtain food or other essential goods or services;
    2. to obtain medical treatment or other health care services;
    3. to engage in physical exercise, either alone or in the company of no more than one other person; or in the company of a family group who ordinarily live in the same Household;
    4. to perform work on behalf of an employer that is engaged in an essential business, activity or undertaking, and the work to be performed is of a nature that cannot reasonably be performed from the person’s principal place of residence;
    5. to visit a terminally ill relative or to attend a funeral, subject to any applicable restrictions under other relevant Public Health Directions;
    6. to provide assistance, care or support to an immediate member of the person’s family;
    7. to attend any Court of Australia or to comply with or give effect to orders of the Court; or
    8. to attend a childcare facility, school, university, or other educational institution, to the extent care or instruction cannot reasonably be obtained in the person’s principal place of residence.
  1. A person who leaves their residence for a permitted purpose may be accompanied by members of their household or, alternatively, by no more than one person who is not a member of their household.
  2. The Queensland Chief Health Officer may grant an exemption to part or all of these directions on compassionate grounds or for other exceptional circumstances.


For the purposes of this Public Health Direction:

Essential business, activity or undertaking means a business, activity or undertaking that is not prohibited by the Non-essential business, activity and undertaking Closure Direction (No.3) or another Public Health Direction.

Essential goods or services are food and other supplies, and services, that are needed for the necessities of life and operation of society, such as food, fuel, medical supplies, and other goods.

Household means persons who ordinarily live at the same residence, including if family or kinship customs or cultural obligations have the effect of a person living across multiple residences.

Principal place of residence means:

  1. For a person who permanently resides in Queensland, the residence where the person ordinarily resides.
  2. For a person who temporarily resides in Queensland, the residence where the person ordinarily resides when the person in present in Queensland.

Residence means premises used, or intended to be used, as a dwelling or mainly as a dwelling, and includes the land on which the residence is situated, and includes:

  1. a single detached dwelling;
  2. each of one or more attached dwellings that are separated by a common wall;
    Examples for paragraph (b) — villa unit, townhouse, terrace house, row house, unit in an apartment block.
  3. A manufactured home as defined in section 10 of the Manufactured Homes (Residential Parks) Act 2003;
  4. a caravan as defined in section 7 of the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008;
  5. any other building or structure situated on the same land as the premises or dwelling.
    Examples for paragraph (e) – shed, pool house, carport, granny flat. But does not include a corrective services facility or detention centre.


A person to whom the direction applies commits an offence if the person fails, without reasonable excuse, to comply with the direction.

Section 362D of the Public Health Act 2005 provides:

Failure to comply with public health directions

    • A person to whom a public health direction applies must comply with the direction unless the person has a reasonable excuse.
    Maximum penalty—100 penalty units.

We will update this list as more information becomes available.

Please visit our Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information, Resources and Encouragement central page for more support.