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Politics Must be Removed from Public Health

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP  -  Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Tags: Health, Community Safety, COVID-19

Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Health spokesperson

All announcements relating to the COVID emergency response during the state election campaign must be removed from politics. 

During the Caretaker period, public health announcements about changes to COVID restrictions should be delivered by public health officials, rather than made on the campaign trail. 

Public health officials are outside of politics and beyond reproach, and best placed to answer any questions about COVID decisions. 

While we expect no candidate would try and politicise the pandemic response, we are in the middle of an election campaign. In this context, it’s inevitable there’ll be a blurring of the lines between politics and public safety if politicians are delivering COVID messages. 

It’s essential the community retains full confidence in the integrity of Tasmania’s public health-driven COVID response.

Twelve months ago, the North West was heading towards a COVID lock down. We only have to look to Easter last year to see how quickly things can change in a pandemic, and with more infectious strains circulating in Australia we can’t take our COVID-free status for granted. 

The importance of public health messages being clear cannot be overstated. Nothing should blur those announcements, especially politics.