Anne Webster, Federal member for Mallee welcomes the adoption of a common sense approach to border restrictions, with the South Australian Government reinstating a 40km border zone in Western Victoria from midnight Thursday.
“I have been calling on the State governments in SA and NSW to find sustainable, workable solutions as we deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, and I welcome the assistance that the Prime Minister has provided to our electorate. I am glad that Premier Steven Marshall has listened to our repeated call for the reversal of their border restrictions. I look forward to the lifting of all border closures as soon as can be achieved.
“The impact of closures and the conflicting messages about exemptions has been deeply distressing for our communities. The fact that the border zone was removed and then reinstated within a week, shows that these hard border closures are unsustainable and were poorly thought out from the start.
“I welcome this easing, but as the saying goes, the devil is in the detail. While this will ease some stress for border communities, there is still significant anxiety for those who need to travel further into South Australia for access to health or to conduct business. Common sense measures need to be put in place immediately and should be based on medical evidence. That evidence should be transparent to the public.
“The announcement from the NSW Deputy Premier, John Barilaro, that NSW are actively reviewing their border position with the intention to ease restrictions and extend the border bubble is also welcome.
These moves are a good start, but we want to see a clearly outlined plan for the easing of border restrictions, and an end to the discrimination that people in Mallee are suffering.