Government rules in Victoria, Australia, say people should wear face masks in public unless they are “consuming food, non-alcoholic drink or medicine” or unless exempt
A police officer has been filmed shaking a member of the public’s coffee cup to check he is complying with Covid rules in footage which has sparked criticism.
Government rules in Victoria, Australia, say people should wear face masks in public unless they are “consuming food, non-alcoholic drink or medicine” or unless exempt.
In the video of the incident which has been shared online, the police officer can be seen asking a man: “Do you mind if I check if there’s anything in there?”
He then shakes the coffee cup, finds it is full, and lets the man go off on his way.
Social media users criticised the incident and were shocked at the measures taken.
One said: “As someone who walks a lot, I have never been checked for compliance by police in two years.
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“If we are worried about open air transmission then joggers and cyclists blowing hard are the concern, not walkers.
“I find this ridiculous. 2,000 cases a day, 90 per cent unvaccinated. Get vaccinated.”
Another wrote on Twitter : “It’s unbelievable, I’ll really never think of Australia the way I once had.”
A third wrote: “So the police believe the virus won’t transmit when you are carrying a coffee cup… give me a spell.”
A spokesperson for Victoria Police told news.au : “We don’t make the rules. The rules are on the Department of Health website.”
They added: “I can’t comment on each incident. Each individual incident will be judged on its merits.”
Victoria today reported 1,903 new cases, up from 1,838 a day earlier.
State capital Melbourne is on track to begin exiting its lockdown on Friday as full vaccination levels near 70 per cent.
The city has endured around nine months under strict stay-home orders since March 2020 – the longest in the world, according to Australian media.
Some virus-free states, however, have flagged they will keep internal borders closed amid fears that reopening could overwhelm their health systems.
By contrast, the federal government said it would roll out its vaccination passport for international travel from Tuesday, a key step in its plan to allow Australian citizens to travel abroad from next month.