Mayor Goff Welcomes Decision To Ease COVID-19 Restrictions

Mayor Phil Goff welcomes the government’s decision to move to the orange traffic light setting. He says the decision will provide relief to businesses after two years of disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, without putting undue pressure on our hospital system as the omicron peak subsides.

“The government decision to reduce restrictions is the right thing at the right time,” Phil Goff said.

“It gives a boost to the hospitality and events industries while minimising the risk of overwhelming the health system.

“With new cases of COVID-19 slowing significantly in Auckland as we move beyond the peak, it makes sense for the red-light restrictions to ease,” Mayor Goff says.

“With high vaccination coverage as well as some additional immunity conferred albeit temporarily by recovery from infection, we are in a good place to start moving towards a new normal, with fewer restrictions on individuals and businesses.

“This will make a big difference for the business community, in particular the hospitality and events sectors, which have borne the brunt of restrictions to keep the community safe.”

Mayor Goff says the phasing out of vaccine passes and removal of caps on indoor gathering numbers means individuals will need to take greater responsibility for reducing their risk of catching or passing on the virus.

“As we move to a more permissive social environment and restrictions reduce, wearing a mask indoors is a sensible precaution, as is regular hand-washing and staying home and getting tested if you have symptoms.

“While restrictions lessen under Orange, that’s not a reason to be complacent. Overseas experience tells us that we will likely have future waves of COVID-19, and health experts warn that new variants are inevitable. We need to continue to take sensible precautions and if you are eligible for but haven’t yet had a booster, please get it done as soon as possible.”