The 50km border community zone is impractical, lacks thought and shows zero consideration the impact this arbitrary figure will cause to border-based communities undertaking daily life.
I call on the NSW and Victorian Premiers to expand this to 100km and given there is no reference to a 50km zone around border communities in the NSW Government’s Public Health (COVID-19 Border Control) Order 2020 it must happen immediately.
In my home of Wodonga, there are so many in the region who regularly work, shop and seek medical services in the Albury-Wodonga community.
Although these people and their families live more than 50km from Dean Street, Albury, or High Street, Wodonga, they consider themselves part of the Albury-Wodonga community.
This is repeated right along the Victorian–NSW border in communities like Echuca-Moama, Swan Hill, Tooleybuc, Mildura-Buronga, Koondrook-Barham, Cobram-Barooga, Corowa-Wahgunyah et cetera.
I acknowledge the Victorian Premier has made the right decision but it must be a strict locking down of Melbourne and affected postcodes to protect others.
The reality here on the border is our communities are already on their knees after drought, bushfires and COVID-19.’
They want to get our businesses open and they want to see their regular customers again, closing borders between states restricts this occurring.
As Australia learns to live with COVID-19 we know isolated outbreaks will occur and need swift, decisive action on a localized level with a local response however here in regional areas the fact is “local border community” is wider than 50km.