WA COVID update: Borders open as new restrictions take effect for places of worship

03 Mar 2022

By Jamie O'Brien

A Perth Catholic wearing a mask follows the readings during Ash Wednesday Mass at St Mary’s Cathedral, on 2 March, one day before Level 2 restrictions came into effect. Photo: Michelle Tan.

Western Australia’s hard border has today been dismantled after 697 days, just short four weeks after the original date set for the resumption of quarantine-free travel.

However, a new round of restrictions has also come into effect from 12:01am, Thursday, 3 March 2022, withLevel 2 COVID-19 Public Health and Social Measures introduced state-wide.

In issuing the directives, Vicar General, Fr Peter Whitely VG said that as community transmission of COVID-19 increases in our community, it is incumbent on all of us to exercise responsibility to ensure that every effort is made to reduce community transmission, demonstrate diligent citizenship as well as demonstrate Christian concern and charity.

“The Archdiocese of Perth continues to support, and comply with, government directives and associated public health advice,” he said.

Click Here to read the latest directives from the Archdiocese of Perth

In addition to the existing indoor mask requirements, proof of vaccination, contact registration and restricted access to remote Aboriginal communities, Level 2 measures include:

Mask Wearing

  • Mask wearing requirements are now expanded to children in Years 3-6 in all public indoor settings (usual exemptions apply).

Gathering limits

  • All home gatherings are limited to a total of 10 people indoors and outdoors, except weddings and funerals.
  • All private outdoor gatherings in a public space are limited to 50 people.
  • The 2sqm square metre rule and 150-person capacity limit applies to places of worship and indoor or outdoor weddings and funerals.
  • Home gatherings are limited to ten (10) people.

Hospitals, aged and disability care facilities

  • A limit of 2 visitors per resident per day to aged care and disability care facilities.
  • No visitors to hospitals, except for spouses, parents or carers, birth partners or for compassionate reasons.


  • The 2sqm rule and 500-person capacity limit also applies for all outdoor public venues and events. Masks required to be worn.

The WA Government’s full announcement outlining all restrictions can be found here.

A Perth Catholic wearing a mask listens during Ash Wednesday Mass at St Mary’s Cathedral, on 2 March, one day before Level 2 restrictions came into effect. Photo: Michelle Tan.

All international and interstate arrivals will be given a rapid antigen test at Perth Airport and required to report a positive result to WA Health.

WA Premier Mr McGowan said he expected the overall third dose vaccination rate would be 70 per cent by March 3, with the first dose vaccination rate among children 5-11 at 65 per cent.

“The introduction of quarantine free travel will naturally mean there will be spread of the virus in WA,” he said.

WA reported 1770 COVID cases on Wednesday 2 March — the first significant spike in five days — and no increase in hospitalisations.

It brought the number of active cases to 6979, but there are only 16 COVID positive patients in hospital and none are in intensive care.

Speaking last week, Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson said WA Health modelling forecast cases would peak at around 10,000 daily cases at the end of March.

“In addition, around 443 general hospital beds will be occupied by peak with around another 53 in ICU,” she said.

“Sadly, the modelling also tells us we can expect four lives to be lost each day once we reach the peak.

“I know this news will be confronting for many… but I am confident that as a community we are well protected and well prepared.”

Further updates relevant to the Archdiocese of Perth will be communicated on an ongoing basis via the Archdiocese of Perth website.

Acknowledgements: The West Australian and PerthNow

Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB sprinkles ashes on top of the head of a Perth Catholic during Ash Wednesday Mass at St Mary’s Cathedral, on 2 March, one day before Level 2 restrictions came into effect. Photo: Michelle Tan.