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What is Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)?

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a new virus that has not been previously identified in humans.
The virus causes respiratory illness (like the flu) with symptoms such as a cough, fever and in more severe cases, pneumonia. You can protect yourself by washing your hands frequently and avoiding touching your face.
The first case reported to the World Health Organisation (WHO) was on 31 December 2019. It has since spread across the world, with WHO declaring the disease a pandemic on 11 March 2020. 

Town closures and cancellations as a result of COVID-19

Please be advised of the following closures and cancellations at Town of Port Hedland facilities, services and locations as a result of the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic.

These decisions align with directives outlined by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Sunday evening: 

  • Wanangkura Stadium gym will close at 12pm today, including all 24/7 access.
  • Social Sports programs are suspended, group fitness programs are cancelled and Creche is closed.
  • South Hedland Aquatic Centre and Gratwick Aquatic Centre will remain open, however all swimming lessons are suspended effective immediately. All patrons must exercise social distancing.
  • Matt Dann Theatre & Cinema is closed effective immediately.
  • South Hedland Library will remain open, however all programming is cancelled. All patrons must exercise social distancing.
  • JD Hardie Youth Zone will remain open, however all kids club programming is cancelled from tomorrow. Afternoon youth programming will still run from Mondays to Thursday, and from Saturdays 9am to 2pm. Friday night SLAM basketball is cancelled. No birthday parties or other bookings will be accepted for the facility. All patrons must exercise social distancing.
  • All facilities bookings at all indoor facilities, including Jim Caffey Hall, Colin Matheson Pavilion, JD Hardie Youth Zone and Wanangkura Stadium have been cancelled.

A decision on the status of the new Port Hedland Library opening will be made in due course.

The Town is looking into alternative program formats where possible to help the community be engaged during this time. The Town is in the process of working out all the details associated with memberships and bookings and appropriate refunds: we will update the community in due course.

For more information on COVID-19, click here.

How is WA responding?

WA borders are now closed via all forms of transportation, as announced by Premier Mark McGowan. 

Western Australia is working closely with the Commonwealth, State and Territory jurisdictional governments to respond to the outbreak of a novel Coronavirus that has recently been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation.

The pandemic is managed in WA under the State Emergency Management Act 2005 (EM Act), and WALGA has been participating in State Emergency Coordination Group meetings as the Association is legislated under the EM Act to represent the sector.

Click here to access the Western Australian Government Pandemic Plan

How is the Town responding?

Our greatest priority at this time is the health and safety of our community. We are working collaboratively with all levels of government to ensure timely and relevant messages are shared with the community, particularly in relation to health and travel advice.

Our first concern is to ensure our public facilities practice an exceptionally high standard of hygiene and sanitation. These are the key actions which are currently happening:

  • Hand sanitiser is available at the front counter of all facilities (JD Hardie Youth Zone, South Hedland Library, Matt Dann Theatre & Cinema, Wanangkura Stadium, Wedgefield Depot, Civic Centre)
  • Increasing the rate of cleaning and sanitation at the Wanangkura Stadium Gym
  • Encouraging the practice of social distancing at facilities 

The Town is currently looking at ways of providing assistance to members of the Hedland community. This may be in the form of providing logistical support to those who are required to self-isolate for an extended period of time - we will make any announcements on further support in due course. 

Which sources of information should I trust?

The WA Department of Health and Premier and Cabinet has declared the HealthyWA website and State Government Coronavirus page as the single sources of truth as the situation with this pandemic is changing daily. It is important to not follow information from unofficial sources, particularly on social media. 

Federal Government economic support

The Federal Government has announced economic stimulus worth $189 billion to help soften the blow of the COVID-19 economic impact across the country. The key measures announced on Sunday 22 March include:

  • Temporarily expanding eligibility to income support payments
  • Establishment of a new, time limited Coronavirus supplement of $550 per fortnight - payed for the next 6 months
  • A further $750 payment to social security and veteran income support recipients and eligible concession card holders, expect for those who are receiving an income support payment that is eligible to receive the Coronavirus supplement
  • Individuals in financial stress as a result of the Coronavirus can access up to $10,000 of their superannuation in 2019-20 and a further $10,000 in 2020-21
  • Providing up to $100,000 to eligible small and medium sized businesses, and not-for-profits (including charities) that employ people, with a minimum payment of $20,000
  • Establishment of Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme

Click here to access the Services Australia website.

State Government economic support

The McGowan Government has introduced measures which will provide relief to families and small business.


  • $402 million to freeze household fees and charges until at least July 1, 2021. This applies to the entire 'household basket', including electricity, water, motor vehicle charges, emergency services levy and public transport fares
  • Energy Assistance Payment (EAP) doubled to $600 to support vulnerable Western Australians, including pensioners

Small businesses

  • $114 million in additional measures to support small businesses
  • Small businesses that pay payroll tax will receive a one-off grant of $17,500
  • $1 million payroll tax threshold brought forward by six months to July 1, 2020
  • Businesses impacted by COVID-19 can defer payroll tax payments until July 21, 2020

Support for small business

On Tuesday 17 March, Minister Paul Papalia announced that the Small Business Development Corporation has created a dedicated COVID-19 assistance centre. This is a one stop shop which provides local small business with dedicated, timely guidance on the available support options during the pandemic. The website includes information on available stimulus packages and eligibility requirements; advice on preparing businesses to manage impacts and other resources. Click here to access this resource.