Protesters in Hyde Park, Sydney on Saturday, May 30, 2020 (Image: AAP/Bianca De Marchi)

Today is the day COVID-19 restrictions start properly easing, with pubs allowing more than a handful of people inside across the country.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison may announce extra cash this week, not for those doing it tough, but for those renovating their kitchen, while News Corp keeps peddling Wuhan conspiracy theories. 

Restrictions ease

The Queensland government has unveiled its plan to ease restrictions in the state, though aims to keep the Queensland bubble intact. From today, locals can travel freely across the state (well, everywhere but biosecurity or restricted zones for Indigenous communities). 

NSW now allows road trips and regional travel, even going so far as to launch a tourism campaign to encourage travellers to spend their cash within the state. Pubs and restaurants can host 50 patrons, so long as they have four square metres of space each. NSW has become the first state to reopen the pokies

Victoria now permits groups of 20 to gather inside or outside, with pubs, restaurants and cafes also allowed 20 patrons, so long as they keep 1.5 metres apart and leave their contact details. 

Despite these new measures, the state has extended its state of emergency by three weeks until June 21 thanks to cases detected in schools. About 100 kids from schools in Melbourne’s northwest are self-isolating after being exposed to the virus. 

Cash for kitchens

Direct cash grants for home renovations may be part of a new round of stimulus for the residential construction sector expected to be signed off by the national cabinet this week.

The industry has estimated a $4 billion home renovation grant scheme would bring in a return of about $7 to $8 billion. 

Not everyone is thrilled: some have questioned why international students and most universities still haven’t received a cent of government funding, with many on temporary visas lining up for food amid the pandemic. 

News Corp is at is again 

In yet another exclusive by The Daily Telegraph’s political editor Sharri Markson, a former intelligence chief has said it is possible COVID-19 could have leaked from a Wuhan laboratory.  

Former head of foreign affairs, defence and ASIO Dennis Richardson has called for a security review of similar laboratories around the world, though (despite the article’s headline) stressed the leak was simply “a possibility”.

It comes after the Tele was criticised for hyping up a leaked dossier “prepared by concerned Western governments” that exposed the Wuhan laboratory theory. The story was picked up by US media, though turns out did not contain new information. It was simply a summary of publicly available material prepared by the US State Department. 

Super Scam

Fraudsters have targeted Australians accessing the government’s early release superannuation scheme, with scammers setting up fake MyGov accounts then lodging applications. 

Using stolen identities, criminals have attempted to withdraw up to $10,000 — the maximum amount under the scheme — from individuals’ accounts. 

The federal government and the Australian Taxation Office told the ABC security has been tightened, but did not provide any details as to how. 


Over the weekend in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney hundreds of anti-vaccination, anti-5G conspiracy theorists protesters gathered yet again. 

On Saturday in Brisbane, they blocked a highway, while in Sydney protesters chanted “freedom of choice” and “my body, my choice”.

Those flouting social distancing measures face fines of $1652 each.