Sunday, January 17, 2021

Why do the states have such mismatched approaches to COVID?


Border closures aren’t going anywhere until Australia’s states and territories get on the same page.

(Image: Gorkie/Private Media)

Compared to the rest of the world, Australia’s COVID-19 restrictions seem draconian. A single case of the highly contagious strain which infected a cleaner at a quarantine hotel caused Brisbane to go into a sharp three-day lockdown (which will be lifted this evening).

Yesterday, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian took a swipe at Victoria’s harsh border restrictions, urging states to talk to one another before making rash decisions affecting hundreds of thousands of people.

The rules are so strict because — without ever actually saying so — most states and territories seem to be pushing to eliminate COVID-19, rather than just suppressing it. Yet the state not pursuing elimination is also Australia’s most populous.

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