Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Health spokesperson
Today’s announcement that Covid close contact restrictions will be dropped is irresponsible and potentially harmful. Case numbers are still extremely high – and most critically, Tasmanians are still dying and developing long Covid.
Winter is coming, the Covid daily case rate remains high, and the effectiveness of the third vaccine dose is waning for many Tasmanians. Now is the time for the Liberals to tighten and reinforce the importance of public health protections, not to weaken them.
Instead of abandoning critical protections, the Rockliff Government should be stepping up mask wearing education campaigns and funding ventilation upgrades.
Removing close contact isolation requirements won’t solve workplace shortages. It will just mean more people get Covid, and more people risk getting long Covid post-viral syndrome and other serious long-term complications.
Epidemiologists across Australia and the world are unified in saying the Covid pandemic is far from over. Just because Premier Rockliff and the Tasmanian Liberals want it to be over, doesn’t make it so.
In the midst of a crisis, we need to take care of each other.
To get through winter safely, Premier Rockliff’s job is to enforce the public health measures that will protect vulnerable people in the community. That means indoor mask wearing and maintaining safe distances, as well as ensuring close contacts remaining quarantined to prevent unnecessary transmission of a highly infectious virus. Encouraging anything else is irresponsible