As Tier 2 restrictions continue, event cancellations and postponements are impacting industries across the South West.
Like many senior students, the daughter of Suzanne Snashall, who attends Austin Cove Baptist College, missed her formal 12th grade.
Ms Snashall said it was canceled just two days before the event was to take place.
“With COVID-19 in the community, a date hasn’t been rescheduled, so it looks like these kids are going to be missed,” she said.
“At this point the parents are considering trying to organize something ourselves so they can celebrate.
“It’s a cohort of just 30 kids, so it’s devastating for them that it can’t move forward.”
The cancellation of events such as the Grade 12 ceremonies has had a significant impact on businesses.
For the Mandurah Offshore Fishing and Sailing Club (MOFSC), there have already been nine event cancellations and one indefinite postponement since Tier 2 restrictions began.
MOFSC chief executive Andres Timmermanis said workshops, dinners, awards and several important club events have been canceled due to the restrictions.
“The loss of revenue due to some of these events represents a significant portion of our operating profit,” he said.
“Club’s canceled events include what is traditionally the biggest trading day for the Club.
“Cancellations also mean lost revenue for our casual staff and the many musicians and artists we hire for some of these events.”
He also said COVID-19 exposure protocols have so far resulted in the unplanned absence of four staff members.
Other industries have successfully adapted to the rule changes.
Anita Revel, who is a celebrant in the South West, said her business hasn’t changed much except for the size of weddings.
She said as the restrictions changed she had to stay “super flexible”.
“About 90% of the weddings I’ve performed have been small since the pandemic,” she said.
“I charge less for elopements, so I’ve lost revenue due to downsizing.”
Ms Revel said she expected a larger influx of weddings in 2023.
“I had my first big wedding last weekend and it was the first time we didn’t need to stream in two years,” she said.
“It was just beautiful and I can’t wait to do more.”
Waves Hair Studio owner Ashleigh Brooks said her business had no more than the normal number of cancellations.
“We had no impact on losses due to cancellations, except for the odd person having to self-isolate,” she said.
“The restrictions don’t affect us as we have a large lounge and sanitize after every customer – the only thing that has changed is the masks and that’s how it is.”
On Saturday, Prime Minister Mark McGowan said he was “very keen” to try to end Tier 2 restrictions by the end of March.
Modeling from WA Health projects the number of COVID-19 cases to peak at around 10,000 by Friday.