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COVID-19: Schools and non-essential services must close now

  • Government must send a strong message to stay home
  • With safety net now in place for workers, stronger measures needed
  • Every hour of delay puts lives at risk

The Labor Party has called on the Tasmanian Government to close schools and non-essential services immediately.

Labor Leader Rebecca White said stronger social restrictions announced by Australian governments last night are welcomed, but more is needed.

“The Government must shut down schools and non-essential services,” Ms White said.

“We need to do this to save lives. Taking this action sends a clear message that this is serious, and that together we need to take action.

“There is now a social security safety net in place to support people to stay home who are not required for the delivery of essential services.

“With that financial support in place, it would be negligent not to act strongly now to save lives.

“There needs to be an end to the mixed messages from governments. Everyone should stay at home unless they are required to deliver an essential service.”

Ms White said she has made it clear to Peter Gutwein that the Labor party will support any measure taken to protect the health of Tasmanians, but would hold him accountable if action was not taken quickly enough.

“We have the advantage in Tasmania of being able to learn from what’s unfolded in other parts of the world.

“No government has regretted taking strong action early; governments across the world have regretted not taking action when they had the chance. We need to learn from their mistakes.

“We also need to increase testing and contact tracing in Tasmania to allow us to understand and manage the spread of the virus in our community.

“If we act strongly and decisively now, our economy has a better chance of recovering earlier than elsewhere, and we will see a faster return to normal life.

“Quite clearly we need to do more. Every hour we wait is putting lives at risk.”

Rebecca White MP
Labor Leader