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COVID-19 in WA: Perth embraces mask mandate, largely

Perth’s public indoor mask mandate has not stopped revellers from celebrating Christmas festivities inside hospitality venues across the city.

Mask wearing was in abundance in both indoor and outdoor settings across the CBD once the mandate came into effect at 6pm on Thursday evening.

Christine Clementz said mask wearing was a small price to pay to enjoy end-of-year celebrations, despite fears of community COVID transmission across Perth.

Clare Gonzales, Holly Nilsson & Christine Clementz at Market Grounds on Thursday night.
Camera IconClare Gonzales, Holly Nilsson & Christine Clementz at Market Grounds on Thursday night. Credit: Matt Jelonek/Matt Jelonek

“They allow us to come out,” she said at the Market Grounds pub.

“In the grand scheme of things, it’s definitely a small price to pay.

“I’m very happy to wear a mask if that means I can protect someone from potentially getting COVID.”

People in Perth and Peel must wear masks in all indoor venues — except homes — over Christmas after an unvaccinated French backpacker went nightclubbing while unknowingly infected with COVID-19.

Anyone who has been in Perth and Peel since December 16, the day the 25-year-old man was believed to have become infectious, and travels to regional areas must also follow the mask rules.

Some CBD shoppers were seen by The West Australian flouting the mandate inside stores shortly after 6pm on Thursday.

Michelle Zuvela with co-workers at The Aviary on Thursday.
Camera IconMichelle Zuvela with co-workers at The Aviary on Thursday. Credit: Matt Jelonek/Matt Jelonek

The vast majority of people, however, were compliant.

About half of all people seen walking outside through CBD streets and Forrest Chase were also masked.

Premier Mark McGowan reassured West Australians that “Christmas Day will proceed as normal” with no mask mandate inside homes or limits on how many people can gather for Christmas lunch.

The mask mandate applies to all public indoor settings across Perth and Peel, including workplaces, shopping centres, hospitality venues, churches and public transport.

Masks are encouraged, but not mandated outdoors.

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