Media Release - 13 August 2020
Tamara Smith MP Member for Ballina is calling for border exemptions for essential frontline workers traveling between NSW and the QLD border.
“The health implications of the border closure as it stands for our Northern Rivers communities is potentially fatal because hundreds of doctors are unable to staff our emergency departments, our medical centres and assist emergency services like the Westpac helicopter rescue service.” Ms Smith said.
“As of tomorrow more than 60 police who serve in the Tweed Byron area command are unable to go to work without quarantining for 14 days after their shift. This is unacceptable for the safety of our communities.” Ms Smith said.
“Emergency service personnel, inducing paramedics are unable to cross the border to assist our community. This is completely unacceptable.” Ms Smith said.
“We know that there are a raft of other severe consequences for workers on either side of the border as a result of the closure. But let’s start with doctors, nurses, police and emergency services and let common sense prevail. We cannot be expected to exist during a pandemic without frontline workers.” Ms Smith said.
“If this works then of course we need to look at all workers travelling back and forth across the border being categorised as essential frontline workers.”