Vic changes grandparent babysitting rules

·1-min read

Victorian grandparents have been told not to babysit their grandchildren, as authorities attempt to clear up confusion surrounding state health orders.

COVID commander Jeroen Weimar confirmed Victoria's stay-at-home directions were refreshed overnight to clarify rules around child-minding.

The order now states children can only be minded by a non-parent or guardian if the child is vulnerable and needs at-home care, if their carer is an authorised worker, or cannot take the child with them to get essential goods or attend a health appointment.

Mr Weimar said health officials were trying another way to get the message across to prevent in-home transmission, urging people to "rein in" their natural instincts to see others.

"If your grandmother looks after your kid every Tuesday and that's a normal thing, you may regard that as part of your normal household activity and that's OK. But at this point in time, it's not," he told reporters on Friday.

"That really sucks but we're doing everything we can to reduce contact now because those cases we are talking about in the west ... continue to be fuelled by those small little exchanges."

Under new rules that came into effect earlier this week, only authorised workers in Victoria can access childcare, kindergarten and early childhood services.

But after announcing the change on August 21, the state government was forced to clarify only one parent needed to be a permitted worker to qualify.

Previously, grandparents and elderly relatives were "strongly advised" not to mind children due to the risk of catching the virus themselves.

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