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COVID-19 Plan Policy Update

Projects that receive funding from Screen Australia will no longer need to provide a COVID-19 management plan (COVID-19 Plan) when applying for funding and/or as a mandatory transaction document for funding agreements that are issued from 16 May 2024.

However, applicants are still responsible for managing health and safety protocols and maintaining a safe work environment, including but not limited to as part of an employer’s duty to eliminate, or if that is not reasonably practicable, minimise the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace so far as is reasonably practicable.

Because loss related to COVID-19 remains an exclusion under insurance policies and completion bonds, Screen Australia still expects, with respect to live-action productions (including documentaries) only, that (A) a production budget will include allowance for COVID-19 related costs, such as a COVID-19 officer and/or coordinator, COVID-19 testing fees for cast and crew and personal protective equipment; and (B) producers will need to warrant that they have a COVID-19 Plan in place.

Screen Australia reserves the right to request details about a producer’s workplace health and safety protocols on a case-by-case basis. For example, a copy of a live-action production’s COVID-19 Plan must be provided to Screen Australia upon request. To the extent that other financiers on a transaction impose specific COVID-19 requirements, Screen Australia may revise the relevant funding agreement accordingly.

For the avoidance of doubt, for unexecuted funding agreements that are under negotiation as at 16 May 2024, Screen Australia will consider on a case-by-case basis whether it is appropriate to adopt this new policy with respect to COVID-19 Plans.