What are non-essential services?

We’ve been hearing a lot in the media about the scaling back and shutting down of non-essential services. Like a lot of people, you may be wondering what non-essential services are?

Well, they’re services that aren’t essential services.

So, what are essential services?

‘Non-essential’ services: what do Australia’s latest coronavirus restrictions mean?

To answer that question, we need to have a look at section 4 of the Essential Services Act 1988 (NSW) (for those of us looking for some light reading during self-isolation).

A service is an essential service if it consists of any of the following:

(a)   the production, supply or distribution of any form of energy, power or fuel or of energy, power or fuel resources,

(b)   the public transportation of persons or the transportation of freight (including the provision of rail infrastructure for those purposes),

(c)   the provision of fire-fighting services,

(d)   the provision of public health services (including hospital or medical services),

(e)   the provision of ambulance services,

(f)   the production, supply or distribution of pharmaceutical products,

(g)   the provision of garbage, sanitary cleaning or sewerage services

(h)   the supply or distribution of water,

(i)   the conduct of a welfare institution,

(j)   the conduct of a prison,

(k)   a service declared to be an essential service under subsection (2),

(l)   a service comprising the supply of goods or services necessary for providing any service referred to in paragraphs (a)–(k).

For the full legislation, visit: https://www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/?fbclid=IwAR1Diw9J0i6iTe3-B2q-oKUZQmemxqBCTJ2CuOoGV7_uwCbA-UtzdUWbVPY#/view/act/1988/41/full

The above is not intended as legal advice. You should obtain legal advice in relation to your own specific circumstances.

Article by Michael Seton

Michael Seton Solicitor Director
Accredited Specialist – Family Law



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