The State of National Emergency to support the COVID-19 response will be extended a third time, for a further seven days.
The initial declaration was made on March 25, and the seven-day declaration can be extended as many times as necessary. It does not change the length of the Alert Level 4 lockdown.
“On the advice of the Director of Civil Defence Emergency Management and after consultation with the Prime Minister, I consider the State of National Emergency should remain in place to support the COVID-19 response,” Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said.
“While the recent COVID-19 case numbers have shown that we are turning a corner, it is essential that we continue to have the powers activated by the State of National Emergency available to maintain the Level 4 restrictions and ensure we do not squander New Zealanders’ good work.
“The powers activated by the State of National Emergency enable civil defence emergency management professionals to carry out critical work during this time including managing roads, traffic and public places; providing first aid, food, shelter and accommodation.
“These powers have been used to direct non-essential businesses to close, direct freedom campers to relocate, requisition a carpark for COVID-19 testing, and close some roads to boost the enforcement of Alert Level 4 rules.
“As we enter the fourth week under a State of National Emergency I would like to thank all New Zealanders for their commitment to helping us break the chain of transmission of the virus.
“The plan is working and now is the time to stay the course and stay home. Stay home and stay strong – kia kaha Aotearoa,” Peeni Henare said.
The State of National Emergency and the COVID-19 Alert Levels are two distinct and separate things. The Alert Levels specify the range of measures that we are taking against COVID-19.
A State of National Emergency provides the people managing the response in an emergency, in this case COVID-19, access to powers they would not normally have, but might require now to implement and enforce these measures.
This declaration by the Minister of Civil Defence extending the State of National Emergency can be found in the Gazette https://gazette.govt.nz/