Over the last fortnight, representatives of the industry have held daily meetings with various
Government representatives to consider amendments to restrictions to enable a further re-opening
of the industry. It is imperative that industry professionals, and particularly employers, continue to comply with the
COVID-19 directives as and when they are announced.
Unoccupied construction sites across the Greater Sydney, including the Central Coast, Blue
Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour, will operate at 50 percent capacity from 11 August 2021
with enhanced COVID safe measures helping to sustain the industry and keep workers safe.
Previously suspended construction sites will be permitted to reopen work with new worksite capacity
limits and minimum vaccination requirements for workers from the 8 affected local government
areas (LGA’s) including Blacktown, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield,
Georges River, Liverpool and Paramatta.
The ripple effect will likely mean that tens of thousands of construction workers who live in the 8
LGA’s throughout Greater Sydney will be able to return to work on Wednesday if they meet the new
requirements in relation to COVID-19 vaccinations. Employers ought to be aware, however, of the
Public Health Amendment (Vaccination Compensation) Bill 2021 (NSW), in particular section 137
which imposes liability on employers for any injury, loss or damage suffered by workers as a result of
vaccinations ordered by employers.
Construction workers from the noted LGA’s will be added to the list of authorised workers allowing
them to work on construction sites in the Greater Sydney if they the meet the vaccination
Workers from the listed LGA’s who do not meet the vaccination requirements are not permitted to
attend a construction site for work, including a construction site in the LGA of their residence.
NOTE – Workers outside the listed LGA’s may travel into the LGA’s for work and are not subject to
vaccination requirements. Vaccination requirements have been put in place for workers who reside
within the listed LGA’s.
For further information on vaccinations visit: www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19
For construction workers from the listed LGA’s to become eligible to work within their LGA or leave
their LGA, the following must apply to them:
- Receipt of both shots of an approved vaccine;
- Receipt of one shot of an approved vaccine at least three weeks prior; or
- Receipt of one shot of an approved vaccine less than three weeks prior and a negative
COVID-19 test no older than 72 hours.
On Sunday 15 August 2021, a dedicated clinic will be hosted, prioritising construction workers for
vaccination at Sydney Olympic Park. The clinic will administer the Astra Zeneca vaccine.
These changes will take effect as of Wednesday, 11 August 2021. In the meantime, employers in the
construction industry ought to seek independent legal advice if it is their intention to mandate
vaccines for their employees to return to their regular duties.
In relation to construction contracts, given the limited capacity of workers on site, consideration
ought to be given to construction programs, date for practical completion and handover, as well as
events giving rise to the granting of extensions of time.
If you or someone that you know is unsure of any of the above, or requires advice in relation to their
construction contracts, our office is available to assist at any time.
Authors: Rishon Cross, Patrick Haklany and Ziv Ben-Arie