The co-owner of two Victorian eateries is beside herself after the dramatic move of the state government to bring forward the second-dose vaccination date for the hospitality industry.
Simone Baur-Schmid, who co-owns Ballarat eateries Meigas and Pancho with Jose Fernandez, has been through hell and high water over the last two years.
Yet, the financial and psychological blows continue.
Ms Baur-Schmid was shocked when she came across correspondence focusing on the changes to vaccination requirements for the hospitality industry at the end of a long night.
"It was about 11.30pm by the time we had finished up our service," Ms Baur-Schmid said.
"I saw the email from Commerce Ballarat in terms of what that meant now for essential workers, especially hospitality workers, needing to be double-vaxxed by Friday."
Her reaction was immediate.
"(We were) very disappointed and very confused," Ms Baur-Schmid said.
"I had everything worked out to some degree. All of our staff were aware of what the roadmap was, what they needed to do, and their obligations for that. Now, it is obviously something that's been changed completely in the space of overnight really."
The consequences of the change of date on the business are substantial.
"(It) has thrown a spanner in the works because we can't open if we don't have any staff," Ms Baur-Schmid said.
"Bookings reopened early this week to allow for the new capacity (of 30 inside) from Friday onwards. That's already booked up completely across both our venues. Now, it's a matter of, we're not going to be able to open or serve these people to that amount if we don't have the staff base."
The government's decision to bring the second-dose vaccination date forward by many weeks has resulted in immense frustration for Ms Baur-Schmid.
"All of our staff have done the right thing; everyone at least has one in line with that roadmap, but not everyone has double, whether that be because of an age thing, whether that be a medical reason," she said.
"We have a lot of staff that are sponsored from overseas as well so they've had to first get verification from a doctor and, obviously being in a country which is not their own, it's taken them a little while to get an appointment. It's a little bit unreasonable to expect everybody to be double-vaccinated over a month earlier from the date they initially said."
The recent development has been another hurdle for Ms Baur-Schmid.
"It's been an ongoing struggle in terms of what we can and can't do," she said.
"Continually opening and closing, telling staff you need them on short notice and that we're going to be back open for dining, and then, all of a sudden, reverting back to, 'Sorry, actually, you're not needed anymore'. Everyone goes back on leave or unpaid leave. We're in the process of hiring new staff who now can't be employed because a lot of them are not double-vaccinated."
Ms Baur-Schmid's fingers are crossed that the government reverses its surprising ruling.
"I'm hoping they can see the logic in terms of what they've now said to people is not going to be viable for businesses to open," she said.
"We're hoping to revert back to what they originally said in the initial roadmap which is November 26. For a lot of other industries, that (date) stands. Hospitality is essentially going backwards instead of forwards."
Staff have money and health fears
Hospitality staff not yet fully inoculated have been placed in a difficult position by the government's decision to bring the second-dose vaccination date forward by over a month.
Rochelle, a chef at one of Ballarat's hospitality venues, found out Wednesday morning that she, along with three other colleagues, faced an unenviable situation.
"I got a phone call from my boss just inquiring when my second vaccine was and if I could possibly get it earlier," Rochelle said.
"He sounded really, really worried about the fact that none of us were (fully vaccinated).
"We possibly couldn't open this weekend."
As a result of the conversation with her employer, Rochelle was immediately concerned.
"I was very, very frustrated and very, very worried about my job," she said.
"We were (originally) told we were opening up on Friday and we had to get our second dosage by November 26.
"That was fine because it was in the timeframe of me getting my second one.
"We were all perfectly fine; we were like, 'Awesome! Everything's going to run smoothly'.
"Then Dan Andrews decides to drop the bombshell that we all have to go and get our second (dose) done or none of us can work."
Financial considerations came to the forefront of Rochelle's mind when the prospect of not being able to work reared its head.
"I've got no other income. I've got a whole lot of expenses," Rochelle said.
Rochelle and her close workmates are particularly worried about the potential impacts of having their second dose of vaccine earlier than what has been officially prescribed.
"I was told it was six weeks, then it was four weeks," Rochelle said.
"Now, Dan Andrews has turned around and said, 'Well, basically, you can walk in and get your second one done'.
"I was already on the edge about it being moved from six weeks to four weeks and now it's a-okay to go and get your second dosage whenever.
"Unfortunately, we are all getting our vaccines earlier not that any of us want to but, because of Dan Andrews, we all have to.
"They're all absolutely frustrated. No one wants to get their second dose done (early)."
Rapid appointments have been made by Rochelle and her colleagues to enable them to work on Friday. She was meant to receive her follow-up dose on October 26.
"We are able to go and get our second (dose) done," she said.
"I'm going to my local doctor, but that was an absolute struggle to get in.
"I told them that I wasn't allowed to work and Dan Andrews has forced me to my knees to go and get my second one done earlier."
Now, with Rochelle set to be fully vaccinated before Friday, she maintains senses of anger, cynicism, and injustice.
"I just don't know how we've gone from a free state to a giant prison," she said.