Today’s announcement to keep Tasmania’s borders closed until at least the end of the month is understandable given the alarming situation unfolding intestate.
Labor Leader Rebecca White said she respects the public health advice and the desire to keep the community safe but also understands the impact today’s announcement will have on struggling businesses and families who were looking forward to seeing one another.
“Tasmania currently sits in a good position compared to other states across Australia when it comes to fighting the spread of COVID-19 in the community and we want it to remain that way,” Ms White said.
“We only need to look at the developing situation in Victoria to see how rapidly this virus spreads and how fast conditions can change.
“Keeping our state’s borders shut until at least the end of the month is an understandable decision, however support needs to be provided to local businesses and workers that will struggle as a result.
“I’ve been speaking with many local business owners during the period of this pandemic and understand the significant impact ongoing restrictions are having on their trade and employment, especially in hard hit industries like tourism and hospitality.
“The government needs to consider providing more assistance to affected businesses and their staff so they are able to stay afloat during this extended period of uncertainty.
“It’s also critical we maintain a robust system at our borders and we are again calling on the Government to introduce mandatory testing for everyone arriving from Victoria.
“We also need to ensure clear processes are in place for exemptions granted for essential workers and apply those standards to all workers who are granted exemptions, not just those from hot spots or Victoria.
“This is the best way we can continue to support Tasmanians through this pandemic and keep our state safe.”