Restrictions were lifted in Greater Sydney last week after more than 100 days of lockdown.
While additional freedoms have been granted, we still have a collective responsibility to continue to keep each other safe, businesses open and livelihoods intact.
In the short term it is unlikely that we will experience a pre-COVID "normal." I will continue still wear a mask outside and I encourage those who haven't and can, to get vaccinated.
We need to be sensible while living with the virus to protect the vulnerable and the young who still aren't eligible for a vaccine.
I can't wait to once again, hug my grandkids, see my sister and friends and meet with the many of you in our community.
Many of you made immense sacrifices and gave up so much so this day could arrive. Thank you to the health workers, other essential workers and volunteers who put themselves at risk to keep us healthy, fed and safe. We owe it to you not to squander the opportunity.
The long path to Freedom Day came at great cost with 60,000 COVID-19 infections, 7,000 hospitalisations and 400 deaths since the beginning of lockdown. On average there have been 5 COVID related deaths per day since June.
My heart and thoughts go out to the many who are grieving the loss of a loved one due to the virus.