Going without a mask at a West Australian airport could cost you the equivalent of a year’s salary under new measures to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Premier Mark McGowan announced the new $50,000 fines on Wednesday, which will apply to anyone over the age of 12.
The masks can be removed if the wearer is eating or drinking, or if airport security needs to check someone’s identity.
It comes amid fresh concerns over the mutant COVID-19 strain, which has been found in hotel quarantine in Brisbane.
Those in Greater Brisbane are required to wear face masks in most indoor settings or face fines of up to $200, while Sydney’s northern beaches and Berala cluster have also seen masks become compulsory.
In Sydney, those who fail to wear masks on public transport and in shopping centres are also up for $200 fines, while Victorians who break the rules also face $200 fines.
Across Australia, mask-wearing on all flights has become mandatory.
Vaccine fines also up for debate
The Western Australian government’s new restriction follows debate over whether Australians could be fined for refusing the COVID-19 jab.
However, Western Australian Health Minister said that while it’s likely the vaccine will be a prerequisite for working in some jobs, he doesn’t agree with it being made compulsory in general, or that those who refuse the vaccine face fines.
“[Issuing fines is] not a proposal that’s been put to me, and we’ve never done it in the past,” he said.
“It may be that in some work settings that we will require people if they want to work in that particular setting, maybe a hospital situation or something of that nature, or aged care setting, that we will require them to vaccinate if they want to continue to work in that space.
“But I can’t see a situation in Australia where we compel people to undertake a medical procedure, that’s never been our approach in the past.”
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