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Long-lasting impacts of lockdown on regional Victorians

The local government's lack of preparation with the pandemic is making the state suffer.
The local government's lack of preparation with the pandemic is making the state suffer.

Our most recent lockdown may have lasted five days, but the impacts will be long-lasting across our regional communities. Is the local government's lack of pandemic preparation making our state suffer?

By news@gippsland - 22nd February 2021 - Back to News

The most recent lockdown may have lasted five days, but the impacts will be long-lasting across our regional communities. When Daniel Andrews announced late on Friday ahead of the busy Valentines Day weekend that the virus had again leaked out of government - run hotel quarantine, it sent businesses and community groups into a spiral of costly cancellations.

Surge in mental health support

In my home town of Swan Hill alone, the cost to the community was estimated at more than $2.5 million after lockdown. The forced cancellation of the annual Victorian Country Week Tennis Tournament, brought hundreds of people into town. The snap lockdown led to a surge in requests for mental health support with Lifeline receiving its third-highest number of calls in the nearly 60 years it has been operating.

Learning from past mistakes

Im not nave enough to say that mistakes wont happen while we all battle a pandemic there is always going to be unknowns that the government must address. The difference is the Andrews Labor Government just isnt learning from its mistakes. Theres more than enough time to learn how to safely deliver hotel quarantine and effective contact tracing. Were still waking up with the daily uncertainty of what well get when Daniel Andrews parades in front of the cameras.

Weve just emerged from a third statewide lockdown. Why does this keep happening? Why is Victoria suffering from such serious and consistent lapses in management of the governments hotel quarantine program and contact tracing? Despite still failing to get the basics right, Daniel Andrews has moved to keep his extreme power over Victorians lives and livelihoods until the end of 2021.

Extend the State of Emergency Powers?

Its part of an ongoing debate in the Victorian Parliament at the moment to extend the State of Emergency powers. Rather than allowing Parliament to review it on a month-by-month basis, Labor is asking for nine months. A nine-month blank cheque to close your business, your childrens school, and force you to cancel weddings and funerals. Daniel Andrews refuses to tell us the truth of what went wrong in hotel quarantine to lead to the second wave and to release public health advice behind his third lockdown. This Labor Government just doesnt care.

Effective contact tracing and quarantine standards

Victorians have had enough. The spin, the rhetoric, the lies and the incompetence has to stop the cost to us is too great. Daniel Andrews must put his arrogance aside and look to other states for his gold standard. New South Wales has successfully managed to keep outbreaks under control with good contact tracing which saves the need to lockdown the entire state. We need certainty but this will only happen when the Andrews Government fixes the holes in its hotel quarantine and ensures contact tracing is up to scratch. More blanket lockdowns will only sound the death knell for more country Victorian jobs and businesses.



By Peter Walsh


Source: http://gippsland.com/

Published by: news@gippsland.com



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