Festive season crackdown: $1000 fines for everyone at party with more than 20 guests

Picture: iStock
Picture: iStock

All attendees to private gatherings in NSW homes above the 20 person visitor limit now risk being slapped with a $1000 fine under new Public Health Order amendments that came into effect on Monday.

Previously, only the organiser of a gathering was liable to receive a fine if the number of people at the premises breached the Public Health Order but now, every person in attendance will now be held individually responsible for the breach.

The total number of visitors includes adults and children but members of the household are not counted among the 20-visitor limit.

The NSW Government said the changes aim to ensure the safety of the community ahead of an expected increase in gatherings associated with Christmas and end-of-year festivities.

Assistant Commissioner Tony Crandell, the NSW Police Operation Corona Virus Commander, said the amendments had been made with community safety in mind.

"Coming into the warmer months, and with end-of-year festivities around the corner, it's only natural that people will have additional reasons to want to gather and get together," he said.

"These amendments aim to ensure that an increase in expected gatherings doesn't mean an increase in COVID-19 cases.

"The new changes come in addition to other restrictions which remain in place, including a limit on numbers at outdoor gatherings and licensed premises.

"NSW Police will continue to work with the community to ensure compliance to all restrictions under the Public Health Order.

"While the vast majority of people within NSW are doing their part, we will continue to target those who don't."

Other amendments have also come into effect that impact places of worship, auctions/open homes, weddings, and party buses. More information here.