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Jindabyne store fined, forced to close for multiple Covid rule breaches

The owners of The Market food store and cafe in the NSW town of Jindabyne have been arrested and charged with multiple breaches of Covid-19 protocols after four visits by NSW police. 

The business has been forced to close for seven days and fines of $2000 already imposed for public health breaches. 

The owners, both in their early 30s, were arrested on June 30 for failing to wear face coverings in a retail business and subsequently granted bail in court. However when police returned to the business on July 2, none of the staff or customers were found to be wearing masks, there was no QR code in place for visitors to scan and no sign-in register. 

SafeWork NSW’s director WHS metro compliance, Dimitri Argeres, said he was disappointed the seriousness of observing the Covid rules was not getting through to some businesses in the state.  

“A digital check-in process allows for effective contact tracing and is vital in the event a positive case visits the location,” he said. 

“This venue has consistently failed to maintain Covid safety standards and has not complied with its own Covid safety plan or the public health orders designed to help reduce community transmission.”

Argeres said after finding breaches on officials’ fourth visit, it was clear that the ongoing operation of the premises “presented a clear and significant risk to public health” and the company needed to be sent a strong message.

“Businesses need to be doing the right thing to keep their customers and the community safe. We can’t have some businesses complying and others doing the opposite, putting everyone at risk. Any business that repeatedly fails to comply with the public health orders faces temporary closure”.  

They owners are due to reappear in Cooma Local Court on August 5. 

The seven-day trading ban commences today, July 9.

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