Singleton’s Caledonian Hotel licensee fined for breaching COVID-19 vaccination requirements

Just hours after vowing to defy coronavirus vaccination requirements, the licensee of a notorious “freedom” pub in the NSW Hunter Valley has been fined for breaching public health orders.Key points:The Caledonian Hotel in Singleton pledged to not enforce vaccination requirements on patronsThe licensee and an employee have been issued PINS under NSW public health ordersThe pub gained notoriety for its stance on vaccinationIn a social media post on Sunday, the Caledonian Hotel in Singleton pledged to “never give up fighting against the tyrants and evil that threaten our very own freedoms and liberties”.”Abiding by the law, we will not be invading people’s privacy and asking for their medical status. Let’s hope that those who uphold the law can do the same,” a post from venue management said.The post described the public health orders requiring patrons to show their vaccination status as “the most shameful and disgusting act ever to be imposed on the good people of Australia, that being segregation and discrimination”.On Monday police attended the venue and issued $1,000 Penalty Infringement Notices (PINS) to the licensee, a 57-year-old man, and a 54-year-old employee, related to being unvaccinated and present at a high-risk premises.The licensee was also issued a PIN for failing to take reasonable steps to ensure unvaccinated adults were not inside the business.”Officers have spoken with the licensee and reminded him of his obligations under the Public Health Act,” a police spokesperson said. The pub has since removed some of the signs from its balcony.(ABC Upper Hunter: Bridget Murphy)Find more local newsMatt Canavan showed the pub supportThe venue gained notoriety in August after it draped a sign reading “jab or no jab, all welcome at the Cali free Australia” from its prominent balcony in the centre of town.What’s being shared online in your town?Have you seen your regional community change because of what people are sharing online? The ABC’s Country Social project wants to hear from youRead moreThe pub gained the support of Senator Matt Canavan, who shared a photo of the sign on Facebook.”Common sense lives! Free Australia!” Mr Canavan commented.The Caledonian Hotel could not be contacted for comment. In September, the venue issued a statement to media outlets.”The Caledonian Hotel under the Australian Constitution 1901 will abide by all law and will never discriminate against anyone,” the statement read.In the Lake Macquarie region, police have fined workers at a barber shop $1,000 for breaching public health orders.Police attended Walkabout Barber Enterprises at Warners Bay and found a 24-year-old female employee who was serving customers was unvaccinated.On social media, the owner of the business said he would now close his business until December 1 when restrictions for unvaccinated people eased.

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