The Australian state of Victoria has banned the New Year’s Eve midnight kiss despite having two months of no Covid-19 cases.
State Premier Dan Andrews has issued a draconian approach to prevent any risk of an outbreak as Melbourne heads into the new year.
The government said kisses and hugs should be off-limits for anyone but immediate family members.
“Just as Christmas was a little different this year, New Year’s Eve will be too,” the Victorian Government said.
The spokesperson also told Victorians to carry hand sanitiser with them on New Year’s Eve if they are going to parties, and warned not to share drinks.
“Take some hand sanitiser with you, don’t share drinks with others and [new year] kisses and hugs should [only] be shared with those in your immediate family.”
The advice comes as the government asks the community not to “say farewell to the great habits we have made part of our every day”.
Melbourne also cancelled its fireworks display due to Covid-19.
Instead, it is now hosting a two-day outdoor dining festival with crowd control restrictions.
“While we won’t have fireworks lighting up the sky at midnight we can still celebrate each other and everything we’ve achieved as a community this year,” Lord Mayor Sally Capp.
The moves come as Sydney experiences a new Covid-19 outbreak.
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