New Victoria COVID cases delay easing

Georgie Moore and Andi Yu
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has slammed the brakes on plans to ease COVID-19 restrictions

Victoria will tighten coronavirus restrictions following another double-digit spike in cases and amid fears of a second wave.

The government revealed on Saturday 25 new cases had been recorded across the state, following 13 on Friday, 18 on Thursday and 21 on Wednesday.

Premier Daniel Andrews has slammed the brakes on plans to ease COVID-19 restrictions further and said some Victorians clearly weren't taking the virus seriously.

From midnight on Sunday to July 12, Victorians will only be able to have five people at their homes. Outdoor gatherings will be restricted to 10.

Cafes, restaurants and pubs had been set to be allowed 50 patrons at one time on Monday, up from 20 currently. That will also be put on hold until July 12.

Gyms, cinemas, indoor sports centres and concert venues will be allowed to reopen as promised but with a 20-person limit.

Victoria's virus case numbers are the highest they've been in more than two months.

More than half of the new cases since the end of April have come from family members spreading it to their relatives.

"It is unacceptable that families anywhere in our state can, just because they want this to be over, pretend that it is," Mr Andrews said.

"It is pretty clear that behind closed doors they are not practising social distancing."

The premier did not rule out lockdowns in specific areas with COVID-19 outbreaks.

The suburban Melbourne council areas of Hume, Brimbank, Casey, Darebin, Moreland and Cardinia have the highest number of new cases since June 1.

"I am not announcing any changes for those geographical areas right now. But I cannot rule that out," Mr Andrews said, adding the strategy had been discussed with the national cabinet.

Victorians have also been ordered to keep working from home until the end of July.

A new $1500 hardship payment will be made available to some workers forced to isolate so they're not on the job sick.

"We have to try and remove that barrier where people are, sadly, making the choice that public health is less important than the welfare and the survival, in a financial sense, of their family," Mr Andrews said.

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said the state was "absolutely at risk of a second peak".

"We are at a point where we have to turn it around or the numbers get beyond us," he said.

Essendon player Conor McKenna is among those confirmed to have the virus on Saturday.

Of the latest cases, 14 are linked to known outbreaks, including seven to a single family at Keilor Downs.

This includes a teacher at Albanvale Primary School.

A student at Camberwell Grammar School also has the virus, as well as a teacher from Springside Primary School at Caroline Springs.

Two cases are linked to two aged care facilities, Lifeview Willow Wood at Cranbourne and Royal Freemasons Springtime at Sydenham.

Three new cases are linked to the Stamford Plaza Hotel, bringing the total there to 10.

One new case is also linked to an H&M store at Northland Shopping Centre and another to a family outbreak at Coburg.

This includes a GP who did not work while infectious.