Lockdown could trigger disaster payment for Sydney residents

With much of Sydney facing an effective lockdown until next Friday, it is possible some residents could become eligible for the Federal Government’s COVID-19 disaster payment.

People who live and work in the local government areas of Woollahra, Waverley, Randwick, and City of Sydney, have been asked to stay home except for work or education, purchasing essential goods and services, providing care, and exercising outdoors.

While work is a permitted reason to leave home, many non-essential businesses may elect to close down or limit staffing for a week.

A number of local government areas in Sydney have been placed in lockdown. (Getty)

“If you are a business in those four local government areas, unfortunately, unless you’re providing essential food and services – that is take away food and services or grocery services of that nature – we don’t expect those businesses to remain open in the next week,” Premier Gladys Berejiklian said today.

With Chief Health Officer Professor Paul Kelly this week declaring those four LGAs, along with the Inner West, Canada Bay and Bayside, an official COVID-19 hotspot, this could trigger the disaster payment for some residents.

The COVID-19 disaster payment was first announced during Melbourne’s recent lockdown as a one-off lump sum for people who had been deprived of income.

Sydney lockdown
Anybody who lives and works in these LGAs cannot leave home save for essential reasons. (9News)

However, to qualify, a person must be unable to work for more than a week.

Additionally, people are not eligible if they have access to appropriate paid leave entitlements from their employer, or if they are getting an income support payment, a state or territory pandemic payment, a Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment, or state small business payment for the same period.

While Sydney is facing more than one week of new lockdown restrictions, the Federal government’s hotspot declaration extends only from June 23 to June 30, meaning that will need to be extended for the payment to be triggered.

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