Victoria's work permit scheme has now begun, with fines of A$100,000 ($108,000) for businesses and A$20,000 for workers who try to cheat the system under harsh stage four coronavirus lockdown.
The fines apply to employers who issue permits to employees who don't meet the requirements of the scheme or otherwise flout the rules. Workers who are caught travelling to or from work without their papers face on-the-spot fines of up to A$1652.
Premier Daniel Andrews yesterday said the work permit system was "a relatively simple process" aimed at having "the minimum number of people moving throughout the community, the minimum number of people working". He apologised for the economic devastation that the shutdown would cause, saying deciding which businesses would be closed was "always difficult".
It came as Victoria recorded its deadliest day of the Covid-19 pandemic so far with a record 725 new cases and 15 deaths, including the state's youngest victim – a man in his 30s.
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"These are the decisions I've made because they are the only option we have in order to try and drive these numbers down," Andrews said.