Further measures must be enforced to protect regional Victoria from Melbourne’s coronavirus crisis.
Unnecessary travel into regional Victoria will only increase the risk of spreading COVID-19, and delay the easing of restrictions in Melbourne and Mitchell Shire.
The recent case of a Melbourne woman forcing the shutdown of several businesses in East Gippsland after breaching lockdown rules demands action to better protect country communities.
Today, the Liberal Nationals are calling on the Andrews Government to strengthen its COVID response to minimise the spread of the virus into regional Victoria.
These measures include:
- Increasing the number of temperature checks at lockdown checkpoints before people are granted access to regional Victoria,
- Implementing temperature checks for passengers and staff prior to boarding V-Line buses and trains,
- Mandating the use of face masks on V-Line buses and trains,
- Requiring any employee travelling from a lockdown area into regional Victoria to have an approved COVID safety plan. They should also adhere to social distancing, hand hygiene measures and wear a mask while at work, and;
- Improving DHHS’ response and reporting times for tests and contact tracing conducted in regional Victoria.
All Victorians have been let down by the Andrews Labor Government’s mismanagement of our state’s response to the COVID-19 crisis and poor contact tracing.
People employed in the health, education, law and order, transport, freight and logistics sectors must be able to commute from home to work and between places of work for our communities to continue to function.
But the sensible measures we have proposed will help to better protect regional Victoria.
Comment attributable to Opposition Leader Michael O’Brien
“Every Victorian has a shared responsibility to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“People living in lockdown areas also share a responsibility to help prevent the further spread of COVID-19 to regional Victoria by following health rules and staying at home to save lives.
“Daniel Andrews’ botched hotel quarantine program has already forced millions of people back into lockdown and it’s not in anyone’s interest for regional Victoria to shut down again.”
Comment attributable to Leader of The Nationals Peter Walsh
“We will only get one opportunity to avoid a second lockdown in regional Victoria. We must all do the right thing now to prevent more lives being lost and more of our country businesses closing.
“The hotel quarantine debacle has been a monumental failure of the Andrews Labor Government, Victorians can’t afford any more failures in containing this virus.
“Regional Victorians are demanding tougher safety measures to protect us from the Andrews Labor Government’s failures that have forced a second wave in Melbourne.
“Every day that Daniel Andrews refuses to take action is another day we risk further spread of this deadly virus.”