Another example of Australia’s sometimes draconian Covid restrictions has come to light in reports that say the authorities in New South Wales have banned singing in churches – even if it is for the purpose of being live streamed to a physically distant congregation.
The current rules have been in force since June 26 and are meant to last two weeks amid a fresh round of lockdowns. The Public Health Order states that, “singing by audiences at indoor shows or by congregants at indoor places of worship are not allowed.”
The thinking behind banning singing among groups of people is that the virus is transmitted faster than through the act of speaking; however, the fact that singing on Zoom, i.e., to a camera is also banned, has left some church leaders in Australia upset with the decision.
The New South Wales order, shared with religious leaders in an email, says that the purpose is to protect those who “may be involved in assisting in live streaming,” and also those who “may be in regional communities attending a service.”