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Liberal Nationals’ positive plan to protect regional Victoria against COVID-19

Further measures must be enforced to protect regional Victoria from Melbourne’s coronavirus crisis. The Liberal Nationals are calling on the Andrews Government to strengthen its COVID response to minimise the spread of the virus into regional Victoria.

State Liberal Member for Eildon Cindy McLeish says that unnecessary travel into regional Victoria will only increase the risk of spreading COVID-19 and delay the easing of restrictions.

Ms McLeish said, “Daniel Andrews is failing country Victoria.”

“I have had many calls from locals concerned about the ease in which people can enter the non-lock down shires of Mansfield and Murrindindi.”

It is easy to travel into country Vic either avoiding or passing through checkpoints. Public transport is also not checked.

“The current situation allows people from Melbourne to catch V-Line buses to Yea, Mansfield and Eildon, without being questioned or temperature checked. There are no checks on the V/Line Trains and buses for people boarding at Southern Cross Station heading to Seymour and Benalla and connecting into Murrindindi or Mansfield Shire.”

“This is destressing

for locals and businesses as there is no monitoring of people coming and going from restricted areas into non-restricted areas.”

There was a dreadful event where an effected Melbourne woman breached lockdown rules, travelling to East Gippsland. Her actions forced the shutdown of several local businesses. This is an example of why action needs to be taken to better protect country communities.

The Liberal Nationals proposed measures will help protect our community from those travelling from Melbourne.

These measures include:

· Increasing the number of temperature checks at lockdown checkpoints before people are granted access to regional Victoria

· Implementing temperature checks for passengers and staff prior to boarding V-Line buses and trains

· Mandating the use of face masks on V-Line buses and trains

· Requiring any employee travelling from a lockdown area into regional Victoria to have an approved COVID safety plan. They should also adhere to social distancing, hand hygiene measures and wear a mask while at work

· Improving DHHS’ response and reporting times for tests and contact tracing conducted in regional Victoria

Opposition Leader Michael O’Brien said, “Every Victorian has a shared responsibility to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.”

“People living in lockdown areas also share a responsibility to help prevent the further spread of COVID-19 to regional Victoria by following health rules and staying at home to save lives.”

“Daniel Andrews’ botched hotel quarantine program has already forced millions of people back into lockdown and it’s not in anyone’s interest for regional Victoria to shut down again.”

The sensible measures proposed by the Liberal Nationals will help to better protect regional Victoria.


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