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Coronavirus disaster: Victorians fined for refusing to wear masks

Daniel Andrews has called out Victorians refusing to wear masks in public as selfish, as Victoria battles the country’s deadliest coronavirus outbreak.

The Premier says most are doing the right thing after it was made mandatory last week for people in locked-down Melbourne and the Mitchell Shire to wear face coverings when outside.

Other Victorians are expected to wear masks when the 1.5m social distancing can’t be done.

Police on Sunday said they had issued 126 fines in the previous 24 hours, as the State reported a record 10 new deaths for COVID-19, taking the State’s toll to 61 and the country’s to 155.

Twenty $200 fines were handed out to people for failing to wear a mask, including to a man and a woman who refused to give police details when they were stopped.

VideoA woman refusing to wear a face mask appears to have recorded herself berating an Australia Post worker.

Videos released on social media of a woman challenging Bunnings workers who asked her to wear a mask to enter a store, and calling out a post office worker have also sparked outrage.

“Maybe she should have grabbed a snag on the way in,” Independent Tasmania senator Jacqui Lambie told Nine’s Today Show on Monday.

“I don’t think Australians will put up with that behaviour … doing that sort of stuff is not helping and it’s not considerate and just making trouble.”

Stores like Bunnings operate on private property and have a right to make requests of customers, including that they wear masks.

The woman in question told the Bunnings worker she was being discriminated against and the request was against the law and her human rights.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews arrives for a daily briefing
Camera IconVictorian Premier Daniel Andrews arrives for a daily briefing Credit: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

Mr Andrews said he was “very proud to see so many people wearing masks right across the city”.

But he took issue with people defying the health orders.

“If you are just making a selfish choice that your alleged personal liberty, quoting something you’ve read on some website – this is not about human rights,“ he said.

“There are 10 families that are going to be burying someone in the next few days. Wear a mask.”

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