When the Premier made the decision to send unvaccinated, unmasked primary school children back in to classrooms during raging community transmission of Covid, he assured Tasmanian parents, students and teachers his government had a plan to ‘return to school safely’.
Peter Gutwein promised schools would provide a ‘Covid safe learning environment’.
Within two and a half weeks, eight in ten Tasmanian schools had reported Covid infections. The Burnie Support School – with some of our most vulnerable students – was forced to close, and as of last Friday, daily case numbers were up by almost 50% since the start of school.
Today, on the first opportunity in Parliament, we asked the Premier to apologise to Tasmanian parents, students and teachers for not keeping them safe from Covid. Peter Gutwein refused to acknowledge his part in the Covid spread in schools, instead attacking the Greens for raising concerns based on evidence.
Just today, the number of confirmed Covid cases has trended up yet again – to 957 – a jump of more than 200 reported cases in 24 hours.
Peter Gutwein’s plan has not provided Covid safe learning environments for unvaccinated, unmasked primary school students. Primary schools are, in fact, where most of the infections and outbreaks have occurred, and subsequently been taken home to infect families.
Under Peter Gutwein’s watch Tasmanian children have been exposed to a deadly virus with known long term health consequences. He should apologise for his leading role in facilitating the spread of Covid in schools.