COVID-19 Update – 18 March 2020

Posted on: 15 March


COVID-19 is having a very significant and immediate impact and the Board continues to consider necessary and timely modifications to club life. We are currently in a volatile and quickly changing world and this volatility is expected to continue for some time. Given the demographic of the membership, the expected increased regulations with respect to gatherings and the legal obligation to undertake all measures that are reasonably practical to protect the health and safety of members, staff and others, a very conservative approach to mitigating the risk is necessary. The Board considers it prudent to be decisive early in the crisis rather than being reactionary as matters develop. The following information reflects that thinking.

The Board believes that maintaining access to the sanctuary of the course for members is paramount as we face this difficult period. While the Board recognises the importance of non-golf activities to many members, these come with increased risk because they’re hosted indoors with participants in close proximity. The following key decisions are therefore to be implemented for the next four weeks. Effective immediately:

  • Play on the course will be limited to members only. Clubhouse access will also be limited to members only.
  • All organised inside events, including bridge, Mahjong and book clubs are postponed.
  • All external events to be held at the Club will be postponed.
  • All Houseguest bookings will be postponed/cancelled.

These decisions have all been made in order to reduce the risk of a contamination at the club which may necessitate a complete closure of the property. The exclusion period will be reviewed on a weekly basis and amended as necessary.

There are also a number of operational decisions that have been made –

  • There will be a significantly reduced hospitality offering available going forward which will be limited to pre-packaged sandwiches and after-golf snacks. Only the Members Bar is operational.
  • A number of operational strategies have been implemented such as dividing some work teams into two groups to facilitate ongoing staffing of the facility.
  • Cash is no longer permitted, and all transactions must be paid by ‘tap card’ or charged to club accounts.
  • The club’s staff is undertaking additional stringent cleaning and adopting relevant hygiene practices and
  • There will be constant review of all operations and members should expect to see regular revision of practices.

HEALTH ADVICE

The Victoria Golf Club is an active club and at some time during this pandemic, a member, visitor or member of staff will be exposed to, or test positive to, COVID-19.

It is vitally important that if a member or staff member tests positive to COVID-19, they must inform the club as soon as possible. If this has occurred, anyone testing positive will be contacted by the State/Territory Department of Health in relation to contact tracing. Should any member test positive for the Corona Virus, you should contact the General Manager, Peter Stackpole immediately on 0484-006-499. You will be required to provide a Doctors Certificate stating that you are not carrying COVID-19, before entry is permitted.

If you have returned from overseas on or from midnight on 15 March 2020, you must self-isolate for fourteen days and not attend the Club. If you develop any symptoms seek urgent medical advice.

Any member, visitor or employee who feels sick with cold-like symptoms must not attend the club under any circumstances.

Members who are at a greater risk of suffering seriously from the virus, including older members and those with chronic illness should seriously consider their need to visit the club at all.

For simple, easy to understand advice including important health tips, you can also refer to the Australian Government Department of Health website – Click here for the Link.

For further information from the Federal Government on COVID-19, the Coronavirus Health Information Line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 1800 020 080.

HYGIENE ADVICE.

The adherence to good hygiene practices will limit the spread of the virus and you should –

  • Be conscious of maintaining a distance from others at all times. Maintain ‘two-club lengths’ distance from everyone at all times.
  • Wear a golf glove at all times while playing and use that hand for using bunker rakes, sand bucket and the like.
  • All play should continue keeping the flag in the hole and retrieve your ball with a gloved hand.
  • Regularly wash hands often with soap and running water, for at least 20 seconds. Dry with paper towel or hand dryer. The cloth hand towels have been removed from use.
  • Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have a tissue cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow.
  • You do not need to wear a face mask if you are well and
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser with over 60% alcohol. The Club is trying to source commercial sanitising units however as expected, this is challenging in the current climate.

 OTHER IMPORTANT MATTERS.

  • The Board has reviewed the expected impact of the pandemic and with the decisions advised above there will be a significant impact on the club’s financial position. There will be a large reduction in income over the next few months as all external income will cease however the Board is comfortable that in the worst-case scenario, the financial position of the club will remain stable.
  • Over the coming months, management will consider the short-term operations of the organisation and implement changes to staffing structures and arrangements that are appropriate in the circumstances and
  • In the coming weeks, the Board will consider how the club can support any members or staff who may be in need. Any member that needs assistance or is aware of another member that might, should contact the club immediately

 GENERAL

The Board has a responsibility to the Club and the membership to be very considered and make appropriate decisions during these challenging times. While members may have their own thoughts and opinions on how we should progress, the Board continues to take expert advice and we would hope that given the conservative nature of these changes, and the over-riding principle that the course be available for play, we would request your support during these times.

The virus and potential implications are changing rapidly and constantly and will be monitored accordingly, and the Club will continue to provide updates as regularly as required.

The next scheduled update to this information will be issued at 11.00am on Saturday 21 March, 2020.

On behalf of the Board of Directors,

David Brophy

Captain


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