'The overwhelming message is to stay at home this weekend'

Picture: NSW Police
Picture: NSW Police

Metropolitan Field Operations Deputy Commissioner Mal Lanyon has one clear directive for the community: "The overwhelming message is to stay at home this weekend."

Deputy Commissioner Lanyon said the arrival of the weekend is not a reasonable excuse to break the stay-at-home direction. Police will have a strong presence across Greater Sydney, from the beaches to the Blue Mountains to ensure that people enjoy their weekend in a COVID-safe way.

"If you have a reason to go out, whether that is to do essential shopping or to exercise, we ask that everyone does so in accordance with the current Public Health Order," Deputy Commissioner Lanyon said.

"We continue to see examples of members of the community not wearing face masks where required or moving around the metropolitan area where there is not a reasonable excuse for them to do so.

"We will continue to work with the community to achieve compliance, but we will enforce the Health Order where community safety is put at risk."

Regional NSW Field Operations Deputy Commissioner Mick Willing, said police will maintain a high-visibility presence on our roads to ensure regional communities remain protected.

"Highway Patrol officers and local police will be on the lookout on highways, main and arterial roads across Northern, Western and Southern Region," Deputy Commissioner Willing said.

"The travel restrictions aren't in place to inconvenience you, they're here to stop the spread of the virus and save lives. Anyone putting the community at risk by breaking the rules will be fined."

Police Minister David Elliott said: "This is an issue for everyone, and we need everyone to play their part. I want to especially praise the efforts and cooperation of the community in South West Sydney."

Meanwhile, the state government has announced an increased presence of compliance inspectors across Sydney and regional areas to ensure businesses are complying with COVID-19 Public Health Orders.

Inspectors will be checking businesses are doing their part to protect the community by wearing masks and enforcing the QR code check-in.

Anyone who has information regarding individuals or businesses in contravention of a COVID-19-related ministerial direction is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au.