Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orders".

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Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Oct 08, 2020 6:40 am



Queensland gives NSW just 48-hours to find source of new infections
Queensland has given New South Wales just 48 hours to track down the source of three mystery cases, or the state will refuse to reopen its border on November 1.

It's not good news for anyone hoping to visit Queensland in early November.

It comes as NSW Health has now added two new locations to its alert list, after being visited by people infected with COVID-19.

That includes diners at Ripples in Milsons Point where all diners are being urged to isolate immediately, considered close contacts of the infectious person.

Annastacia Palaszczuk has warned NSW residents could be locked out of the state for even longer if contact tracers don't find the source of the new infections.

The current benchmark is 28-days without community transmission, and the earliest that could now be is November 4.

Last week the government released a road map to the reopening with NSW, flagging November 1.

But the state's chief health officer and premier have consistently said they will reassess the situation at the end of every month, meaning it could be even later when NSW residents are allowed into the Sunshine State.

If Queensland reaches no cases of community transmission today, it'll be their own 28th day benchmark. ... d=msedgdhp

oronavirus cases in NSW may delay border opening with Queensland, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk gives 24-hour deadline to trace origins
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says she has not ruled out pushing back border restrictions with NSW past the November 1 opening.

She said New South Wales health authorities have 24 hours left to trace the origins of possible community transmission cases, which were revealed yesterday.

Ms Palaszczuk said she is on "high alert" about the current cases in New South Wales and will continue to monitor the situation.

"We are not ruling out anything at the moment," she said.

"There's another 24 hours for them to look at where those cases came from.

"Looking forward to what the Premier of NSW has got to say.

"We hope NSW gets on top of those cases very quickly."

New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she only heard about the deadline to contact trace in media reports yesterday.

"I don't know where they got that from, does it matter how long it takes our experts to find the links?" she said.

"Sometimes it might take them a couple of hours, sometimes it might take them a couple of days, I don't want to put pressure on them unnecessarily, they should just be able to do their jobs."

However, Ms Palaszczuk said the original 48-hour deadline was agreed to by the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee, which is made up of all state and territory Chief Health Officers.

Queensland recorded another day with no new coronavirus infections — the sixth day in a row — after more than 6,700 cases.



Aged care staff found using soiled masks, not given face shields during COVID-19 inspection
Practices at the TriCare aged care home in Toowoomba have been criticised in report by a government agency inspection.
Staff at an aged care home in southern Queensland wore soiled cloth masks and were not given face shields, the federal aged care watchdog has found.

The Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission inspected the TriCare Toowoomba Aged Care Residence in East Toowoomba in August.

It found TriCare's infection control program was ineffective, and plans to manage a potential COVID-19 outbreak had not been implemented.

During the inspection, the commission found there was no supply of face shields at the facility,

It also found that staff had been given cloth masks but were not given consistent information about when the masks should be washed or worn.

"Soiled masks were observed to be worn by staff, and masks were worn under staff members' chins or pulled down to speak to consumers," the commission said.

The ABC understands the masks used had been made from second-hand sheets and required staff to insert a piece of gauze in the front as a means of protection.

The commission also found gloves were being used inappropriately, including staff not changing gloves after removing rubbish.

Lack of social distancing
TriCare was also criticised for its pre-entry processes. The commission found visitors were required to perform their own temperature checks.

"There [were] no directions as to how to use the equipment or cleaning instructions," it said.

The commission also found the aged care home's foyer was crowded when it carried out their inspections and staff were not practising social distancing.

Tricare, in its response to the commission, said several improvements had been made to its service since the August inspection.

It said additional training had been implemented for staff, including the donning and doffing of personal protective equipment (PPE).

The commission said it acknowledged TriCare's actions to ensure it had an effective COVID-19 outbreak management plan.

It said the actions would require time to be implemented and evaluated for their effectiveness.

TriCare has been contacted for comment. ... d=msedgdhp

Mystery woman left at a hospital won't tell police her name
Police have officially closed the case of a mystery woman who was left at a hospital in the Sunshine Coast.

The woman, believed to be in her 80s, was the subject of a nationwide police appeal as she was unable to tell doctors at Nambour Hospital who she was, due to a 'challenging health situation'.

It has now been revealed that the woman will stay in the care of Queensland Health after she managed to communicate to doctors that she was aware of who she was but did not want to share her identity with the authorities.

Cops have dropped the case after a month-long search for the woman's relatives.

'The woman recently began speaking with police and has clearly indicated she is aware of her identity,' Queensland Police said in a statement on Sunday.

Police said she did not wish to share her identity with them 'for personal reasons'.

The woman was initially 'challenging' to identify because she was non-verbal and in need of medical attention when she arrived at hospital.

Police said public assistance was now no longer required and asked that 'the public and the media respect the woman’s privacy as per her request.'

'As no criminality has been detected, police have ceased involvement in this matter and the woman will be left in the care of Queensland Health,' the statement said.

Investigators issued a number of alerts in a bid to reunite the woman with her family after she was found, saying the situation was unique and almost like a reverse missing person's case.

She started talking with people after she was transferred to Sunshine Coast University Hospital and her health improved.

Police Inspector Matt Robertson says the woman had been in a vulnerable situation and 'very frail', requiring medical treatment.

The man who found the woman took her to hospital and told staff he didn't know her and had no reason to think he was doing anything except helping her.

'He came in, he stated exactly what occurred and at this stage the evidence suggests what he said occurred,' Inspector Robertson said, according to the ABC.

'He does believe he might have seen her in the area before.'

They do think there may be a story to tell however and the missing piece was a 'puzzle'.

Police also released an image of the woman's ring in the hopes it would help someone identity her.

'Our primary investigation is just to locate who this lady is to reunite her with her family,' Inspector Robertson said.

'It's not something where we've been able to go charging in very quickly with and we're taking it one step at a time and exploring those avenues as she's capable.' ... d=msedgdhp


WA records two new virus cases
Two new COVID-19 cases have been reported in Western Australia, a man and a woman in their thirties who both travelled to Perth from overseas.

WA's Department of Health said in a statement on Thursday that both were in hotel quarantine.

The state has now recorded 690 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 11 active cases being monitored and 670 people recovered from the virus.

There have been 439,993 COVID-19 tests performed in WA to date. ... d=msedgdhp


SA-Victorian border communities call to relax continuous COVID-19 testing as health complaints emerge
There is mounting pressure to relax seven-day COVID-19 testing requirements imposed on cross-border communities as reports emerge of health problems and growing anxiety over nasal swabs.

Those living on the South Australia-Victoria border are nearly three months into continuous testing, which involves a swab deep into the nasal cavity and throat.

They want the testing requirement relaxed, saying the burden of testing is out of proportion to the risk of COVID-19 because of the low number of cases being recorded in regional Victoria.

The SA Government announced on Tuesday it would increase the border travel bubble from 40 to 70 kilometres and consider reducing testing to fortnightly.

Local MPs, whose electorates include cross-border residents, have confirmed the tests are one of the most common issues raised.

Social media forums for the communities feature posts in which people complain of headaches, bloody noses, and anxiety because of the tests.

"I'm over the headaches, nasal blockages, nasal inflammation, and the stress of knowing its nearly test time again," one person wrote.

'Panic and anxiety' over testing
Facebook group Cross Border Call Out has urged its followers to report any reactions to their doctor and advise SA Health.

A department spokesperson said while the tests could be uncomfortable "we have had no reports of headaches, regular nosebleeds, earaches, or other health issues occurring following regular COVID-19 testing".

But social media users describe them as traumatic.

"I was starting to feel like a child scared of my vaccinations," posted one Facebook user.

"Days before my test date I'm panicking and suffer anxiety and nausea. I though I was the only one. It's so stressful especially when you get bad tests done.

"I push the tests out if I can by staying home for as many days as I possible from day six," posted another user.

"I honestly cannot believe we live in a world where they can force people to go through this when we are not sick, have not been a close contact, and we don't even have any COVID cases for hundreds of kilometres."

Cross-border residents say the discomfort from the test can vary depending on the swab used and the skill and experience of the person conducting the test.

Border electorates raise issue with MPs
Local MPs offices have been contacted frequently about the issue of testing.

Member for Mildura Ali Cupper said South Australia's inclusion of the new 70km bubble zone would allow Murrayville residents in Victoria to travel to Loxton in SA, even though it was 130km by road.

But she said the testing requirements needed to be addressed.

"The timeline that is being applied here is excruciatingly slow," Ms Cupper said.

"It's an incremental step. And while 70km is better than 40km, for our cross-border towns the thing that is really driving them mad is this requirement for a COVID test every seven days.

"It's painful. It's annoying. Every seven days having to have a test just to go and get fuel."

'Safer than anyone, including border police'
Murrayville resident and Pinnaroo business owner Synon Peers said while he welcomed the extension of the border bubble to 70km, the weekly testing requirement needed to be relaxed.

"Some of us have had a dozen or more consecutive negative COVID tests," he said.

"The police on the border are unbelievable, and the army, but they're not having COVID tests. So essentially we're safer than anyone as far as being a risk to South Australia goes."

Mr Peers said he had heard of health impacts and would welcome the testing moving to fortnightly.

"Having it every single week is not the most pleasant thing, there are a few people who have had some complications," he said.

"Half the amount of COVID testing would be great." ... d=msedgdhp


NT to remove Sydney COVID-19 hotspot status as NSW outbreak grows to eight
The Northern Territory will open its borders to arrivals from Greater Sydney on Friday as the extent of an infection outbreak in the city remains unknown.

The Northern Territory Government first announced its intention to lift the hotspot declaration on Greater Sydney last month, saying arrivals from Sydney could freely enter the NT if there was a continued "downward trend of cases".

But an outbreak of coronavirus across Western Sydney, with NSW authorities confirming eight locally acquired infections in the past 36 hours, compelled the NT Government to seek further health advice before deciding to lift the hotspot declaration.

This afternoon, NT Deputy Chief Health Officer Charles Pain said the decision to lift the hotspot was "considered carefully" and was safe because the Sydney outbreak is "controlled and contained".

Dr Pain's comments came hours after NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she expected to see more cases identified from the Western Sydney clusters in the coming days.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has also not ruled out extending border restrictions with NSW in the wake of the outbreak.

On Thursday, Ms Palaszczuk said NSW health authorities had 24 hours to trace the origins of the cases before potentially delaying a November 1 opening between the states.

But Dr Pain said a meeting with the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee — the national conference of chief health officers — indicated the outbreak was a minimal threat to the Northern Territory.

"The reason for this is that we have had a very thorough review of these cases … the NSW Chief Health Officer provided us with details of those cases and we are confident that they are all connected and therefore they constitute a single outbreak," Dr Pain said.

"This means that there's no established community transmission by the definition that we have and we're confident that the outbreak itself is controlled and contained.

"We're very confident that the testing regime and the contact tracing in NSW is of a very high standard, and we are therefore happy with our plan to open [Friday]."

When the hotspot declaration lifts at 12:01am Friday, arrivals from Greater Sydney will no longer be required to enter a two-week period at their own expense in a Government-approved facility.

Dr Pain conceded opening the Northern Territory up to Sydney arrivals equated to a greater health risk, but that the risk was "acceptable".

"We are gradually opening up. We are opening up to more risk, of course we are," he said.

"But we are opening up to a very low risk and what we think is an acceptable risk.

"We cannot guarantee [coronavirus] will not get into the Northern Territory … we can keep ourselves and our borders up for months and months and months but we know what the consequences of that are. We know what the consequences of lockdowns are.

"We are going to have to adapt."

When asked for the CLP's stance on lifting the Greater Sydney hotspot, Opposition Leader Lia Finocchiaro said the decision "should be guided by the expert health advice".

Dr Pain strongly endorsed the use of face masks by Territorians as the jurisdiction's risk profile increases.

"I'd like to see people starting to wear masks. I'd be delighted to see people starting to wear them. I think that would be a signal to everyone that we are taking those behaviours seriously," he said.

Dr Pain also warned against lax physical distancing he has seen creep into the Northern Territory, which could undermine public health.

"Anyone who walks around the streets, particularly in enclosed spaces, in supermarkets … people are often not maintaining 1.5 [metres]," he said.

"There are times where you see in public that people clearly don't know each other and aren't maintaining distance." ... d=msedgdhp

Petition launched by opponents of private concrete jetty for Ralphs Bay

Locals are concerned a proposal by a prominent Hobart developer to build a 60-metre long concrete jetty on Crown land will destroy the natural beauty of a southern Tasmanian foreshore and set the wrong precedent for the use of public land.

Sultan Holdings has plans to build the 1.5-metre high jetty and shed on the foreshore of Ralphs Bay, at Sandford.

The proposal also includes a 3.2-metre high storage shed at the entry to the jetty.

The jetty would sit directly across from existing property further inland also owned by developer Sultan Holdings, which developed University of Tasmania student housing, Moonah Central Shopping Centre and the hotel at the Hobart International Airport.

Community concern growing
A petition with nearly 700 signatures calls for residents to voice their concerns over the plans, and a group of residents called the "Save Ralphs Bay Again Group" has also mobilised.

The group's spokesman, Peter Osborne, said the development sends the wrong message.

"It becomes possible for people to use Crown land for their own private purposes and as that happens, more and more public land is lost," Mr Osborne said.

"Crown land is for public purposes. This is a private jetty … so there will be no public access," he said.

He also said the size of the structure would take away from the area's natural beauty.

Local Robyn Moore grew up in the area and nearby Dorans Road is named after her grandmother, Mary Doran.

"I think she'd be horrified to know one individual could come in and build a private jetty on Crown land," Ms Moore said.

"It takes away from the Tassie rural lifestyle … if we say yes to something like this then it enables everybody to be able to put a private jetty if they want on Crown land," she said.

The group is also worried about the environmental impact of the development.

In the development approval, it is stated the proposed jetty "will not involve significant disturbance of the marine or terrestrial environment".

An attached assessment by an environmental consultant acknowledged the area is known for handfish sightings, but said none were found during the assessment.

"Targeted searches for seastars and handfish were conducted but did not identify any threatened protected species within the study area," it said.

"However the area does provide potentially suitable habitat for both and as such minor mitigation approaches are recommended."

It recommends construction does not happen during handfish breeding season.

Battle over Ralphs Bay not the first
More than 10 years ago a plan for a much larger canal-style development in Ralphs Bay conservation area was scrapped after community backlash.

Greens leader Cassy O'Connor led the opponents of the development.

She said the latest issue over the jetty raises similar concerns.

"If Mr Sultan wants to build a jetty, let him buy a piece of private land and put in a development approval for this on his own land rather than trying to take something away from locals," Ms O'Connor said.

City of Clarence Mayor, Doug Chipman, said Council will consider the proposal.

"I can't comment on the application at this stage whatsoever. As a member of the planning authority I need to keep my mind open on the matter until Monday night," Mr Chipman said. ... d=msedgdhp

CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm
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Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Oct 08, 2020 7:36 am


New Zealand's Covid-19 response the best in the world, say global business leaders
New Zealand’s response to the coronavirus pandemic has been the best in the world and is the country that gives business leaders the most confidence for future investment, according to a Bloomberg Media survey.

New Zealand ranked strongly for political stability, the economic recovery, virus control and social resilience in Bloomberg’s market crisis management index, published on Thursday.

The index scores New Zealand at 238, above second-placed Japan at 204 and Taiwan in third on 198. Australia was sixth with 151, while the UK and US – despite their high case numbers and fatalities from Covid-19 – were ninth and 10th.

Related: The New Zealand election, like watching a political fight through the Calm app | James Nokise

In a boost for Jacinda Ardern’s chances of winning a second term in the election on 17 October, New Zealand scored the highest ranking in each of the categories.

Its political stability ranking was its best score and was also the most preferred holiday destination for executives once it was safe to travel.

As Auckland enjoyed its first day free of restrictions since a second wave hit, New Zealand’s finance minister, Grant Robertson, said the government’s plan to go “hard and early” against the virus had been a success.

“We have one of the most open economies in the world because we set out a plan and stuck to it. We have eliminated our second wave, as others are still grappling to get this virus under control.

“Our clear plan to deal with Covid-19 is being noticed, particularly by global businesses. Our strong and steady Covid response means we’re opening up investment opportunities to support the recovery and rebuild.”

More than half of the business leaders surveyed said they were still highly concerned by the Covid-19 pandemic, but more so in markets such as Japan, Malaysia and Thailand, and markedly more in the younger segment of executives. Bloomberg questioned around 700 people by telephone, mostly senior executives in a range of industries, with 53% from large corporations and 47% from small and medium sized enterprises.

The survey showed that businesses main concerns in the pandemic were the number of unknown problems that could arise, along with issues about supply chain, international business travel, the lack of local government support, and data security.

Their biggest focus coming out of the crisis was strengthening crisis management, business continuity planning, and digital transformation. There was also growing emphasis on managing staff optimism, heightening human resources and healthcare planning as well as cybersecurity measures. ... d=msedgdhp
Last edited by kingofnobbys on Thu Oct 08, 2020 7:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Oct 08, 2020 7:44 am


Maccas, Woolworths, and Coles are the biggest Budget winners — their workers not so much
Supermarket and fast-food giants could be the biggest beneficiaries of the government's new wage subsidy for young people, with the hiring credits potentially reducing their wage liabilities for teenage workers by two-thirds.

Citi analysis released on Tuesday said the JobMaker hiring scheme detailed in the budget was likely to assist high-performing retailers such as Coles and Woolworths, while the Retail and Fast Food Workers Union (RAFFWU) has pointed to McDonald's as a major beneficiary because of its 100,000-strong workforce, largely aged under 21.

The flat $200-a-week subsidy to encourage the hiring of workers aged 16-29would mean a retail and fast-food business recruiting an 18-year-old on the minimum 20 hours a week could effectively reduce their wage bill from $15 an hour to just $5 an hour.

Citi analyst Craig Woolford said businesses that had a relatively high staff turnover, younger employees and were in a position to expand their workforce were set to benefit from the subsidy and supermarkets were going to be "best placed".

"Woolworths and Coles are likely to be the major beneficiaries given their employee costs, churn and ability to add staff following strong sales and earnings," he said.

RAFFWU secretary Josh Cullinan said McDonald's would "love" the subsidy and it could see the franchisor shift its reliance on 14-16 year-olds to the 17-25 cohort, which was in a better position to work the scheme's minimum 20 hours.

Hiring an 18-year-old would provide McDonald's a "very substantial" benefit, he said, as the subsidy would effectively fund $10, or two-thirds, of their $15 an hour junior rate.

A possible 'windfall'
More than 50 per cent of McDonald's 105,000 workers are under 18 and about 80 per cent are under 21.

With each store staffing an average of 100 workers, Mr Cullinan said "you can imagine the benefit".

"If they only get 50 people, or even only 20 people, the franchisee has got a windfall of $4000 a week or $200,000 a year," he said.

However, the scheme's eligibility rules could restrict any windfall, including conditions that the recruit was on JobSeeker or the Youth Allowance and that the business must have increased its total headcount and payroll from September 30 over a three-month period.

Citi's Mr Woolford said a business still had to be in a position to expand its workforce to benefit and it was unclear how much that would apply to fast-food businesses such as McDonald's.

"Supermarkets have benefited quite a lot from demand for eating at home," he said.

"A small portion of fast-food businesses have done well but a lot of them have not done well because people in certain states at certain points in time have not been able to eat out."

McDonald's has plans to open about 25 new stores and is considering increasing employment before the summer months.

Employment opportunities
A spokesman said it was "taking the appropriate time to consider the implications of the budget".

“We will continue to grow our business and open new restaurants in the year ahead. Each new restaurant creates approximately 100-120 new employment opportunities, consisting of full-time, part-time and casual employees.”

Coles and Woolworths employed 20,000 new workers in the early months of the pandemic in response to a surge in demand and are now in the middle of their pre-Christmas hiring.

Woolworths also plans to open 10-20 new supermarkets and 15-30 Metro stores over the next year, which would require thousands of new staff.

However, neither business is understood to be planning a major recruitment drive.

Indeed, Asia-Pacific economist Callam Pickering said it was a good thing to see the government address the high rate of youth unemployment, which he said had been a problem since the global financial crisis and was exacerbated by the pandemic.

"It absolutely will encourage businesses to employ more young people. The issue is it could also distort and create some perverse behaviour from businesses.

"For example, why would a business hire a full-time younger worker when they can hire two casual workers and double their subsidy?"

Businesses such as supermarkets that had done well during the crisis would also be hiring younger people regardless of the subsidy.

"They don't need the extra $200 to encourage them to hire. They're largely going to be pocketing this wage subsidy and it could end up as higher profitability, greater dividends or bigger bonuses for high-level staff and executives." ... d=msedgdhp

Wild weather batters SA, Tasmania and Australia's east coast

Wild weather continues to lash parts of Australia as heavy downpours, thunderstorms, hail, ferocious winds and flash flooding create havoc.

Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania have copped the brunt of the conditions in recent days following the formation of a La Nina event and a massive low pressure system spanning much of the country.

The Bureau of Meteorology has issued severe weather warnings for those states on Thursday, along with New South Wales as the wild weather makes its way up the east coast.

South Australia has copped the biggest soaking with Adelaide forecast to reach its average October rainfall of 44mm just eight days into the month on Thursday.

Caravan and Camping Industries SA chief executive Stuart Livingstone was filmed driving through a flooded Outback Highway in South Australia on Wednesday

The atrocious conditions brought down several trees and powerlines across the city with another 8mm of rain forecast for Thursday.

South Australia's mid north has been inundated with flash flooding with up to 50mm falling across the region.

Motorists travelling through the Riverland, Flinders and North East Pastoral regions are also urged to take extra precaution.

South Australia Police shared a photo of a flooded Barrier Highway on its Facebook page, along with a warning to motorists to drive to the conditions.

In the state's north-east, Mulyungarie Station near the NSW border received up to 28mm, which filled up creeks that had been dried out.

Caravan and Camping Industries SA chief executive Stuart Livingstone shared a video of himself driving his Nissan Patrol through a flooded The Outback Highway between Hawker and Parachilna in the Flinders Ranges.

The footage shows stranded motorists standing on the side of the cut off highway filming him drive through the flooded road.

'The heaviest rain has now passed in South Australia with Tasmania and Victoria to see the worst of the conditions on Thursday as the low pressure system intensifies,' BOM senior forecaster Jonathan How told Daily Mail Australia.

South Australia Police shared a photo of a flooded Barrier Highway on Wednesday

This Weatherzone map shows the rain forecast for Australia between Tuesday and Friday with the most affected parts in orange and red
A gale warning is in place for most Tasmania regions with the state north and north east to receive up to 120mm rain.

Heavy rain and damaging winds have also been forecast for much of Victoria with flash flooding in some regions.

Heavy downpours of between 80mm and 120mm are forecast for the state's north-east ranges before easing later on Thursday.

A severe weather warning is in place for the south west, north central, north east and parts of central, East Gippsland, northern country and West and South Gippsland districts.

'The warning now covers the risk of damaging winds about the coast on Thursday afternoon, as well as the continued expectation of heavy rain and damaging winds,' BOM tweeted.

A severe weather warning is in place for much of Victoria for areas pictured in dark yellow

Farmers and graziers are warned of possible loss of livestock exposed to the severe conditions.

Melbourne will receive up to 20mm of rain on Thursday before conditions clear in time for the weekend.

The wild weather is making its way up Australia's east coast with a late thunderstorm to lash Sydney after reaching a top of 30C.

A strong wind warning is in place for much of the NSW coast from as far as Eden in the south right up to Byron Bay in the far north.

'Many parts of NSW could have potentially severe thunderstorms. That includes Sydney, the Illawarra and the Hunter region. The storms could move quickly and be accompanied by damaging winds of 90km/hr,' BOM states.

Residents are urged to follow advice from NSW SES and monitor warnings.

'A strong warning is also in place for the NSW Alps,' Mr How told Daily Mail Australia.

Cattle station Mulyungarie Station (pictured) in South Australia's north-east near the NSW town of Broken Hill received up to 28mm on Wednesday

BOM senior forecaster Kevin Parkyn said the giant low pressure system heralds the onset of the La Nina weather pattern, which will deliver a wetter summer.

'The atmospheric conditions are just ripe for that system to intensify tonight right over Victoria,' he told reporters.

'We call that process cyclone genesis. This system is linked to tropical moisture, we haven't seen that for quite some time.'

BOM has officially declared the first La Niña event since 2010 to 2012, when floods ravaged Queensland, killing 33 people.

A La Niña occurs when stronger equatorial winds, blowing east to west, cool the Pacific Ocean in the tropical north of Australia.

This brings more rainfall during summer and reduces the risk of a summer bushfire.

The risk of flooding and cyclones, however, is heightened.

La Niña events often form in autumn or winter, before dissipating in late summer.

The greatest effect normally occurs during the spring and early summer period.

They usually last for about a year but can sometimes be shorter or longer.

During the last La Niña between 2010 and 2012, the weather bureau said Australia had one of the 'wettest two-year periods on record'. ... hp#image=4
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Oct 08, 2020 7:56 am


Humanities degrees set to double in price as Parliament passes higher education bill
Parliament has passed contentious laws that will dramatically increase the cost of some university degrees, while cutting the cost of others.

Under the changes, the cost of a social sciences degree will more than double, while nursing, mathematics and teaching degrees will become cheaper.

The laws also remove government support for students who fail too many courses.

The cost of degrees will change due to a major shake-up of how much the Commonwealth will pay for students' degrees.

Education Minister Dan Tehan says the changes will give students cost incentives to study subjects that will prepare them for fields where jobs are needed.

"The ... legislation will provide more university places for Australian students, make it cheaper to study in areas of expected job growth and provide more funding and support to regional students and universities," he said earlier in the week.

The changes were passed in the Senate with the support of One Nation and Centre Alliance senator Stirling Griff, whose crucial vote the Government secured earlier this week.

In securing his support, the Government made concessions to give South Australia more Commonwealth-supported places, and offer some protections to students who failed courses.

Lambie doesn't want kids to 'dream cheaper'
Opponents of the laws say the changes saddle university students with substantially higher debt if they pursue their preferred study paths.

The changes are strongly opposed by Labor and the Greens, along with independent senators Rex Patrick and Jacqui Lambie.

In an impassioned speech on Wednesday, Senator Lambie said she feared the changes would lock poorer students out of a tertiary education.

"I'll be damned if I'll vote to tell those kids in rural and regional areas of Tasmania that they deserve to have their opportunities suffocated," she said.

"I refuse to be the vote that tells poor kids out there … no matter how gifted, no matter how determined you are, might as well dream a little cheaper, because you're never going to make it, because you can't afford it."
PER YR ... d=msedgdhp

The domestic flights helping Australians enjoy holiday during COVID
Regional flight routes have surged in popularity among travellers as Australians explore new holiday options amid widespread border closures during the coronavirus pandemic.

Qantas travel data showed Brisbane-Cairns emerged as its most popular domestic route during the September school holidays - up from 14th place the same time last year.

Holidays within Queensland have boomed with the state's border only open to South Australia, the Northern Territory, Tasmania and the ACT.

Second on the list was Perth to Broome - a route rising to second from 20th - as Western Australians made the most of in-state travel during WA's hard border closure.

Brisbane to Townsville in central Queensland was another in-demand regional route up from 11th to third place, while Sydney-Adelaide and Canberra-Brisbane were the only trips in the top five crossing state lines.

'We know there's huge pent-up demand for air travel and we've seen families travelling to new places during the school holidays because they weren't able to get to their traditional holiday destinations,' Qantas Domestic CEO Andrew David said.

'We've added more flights to these popular destinations and launched new routes where we’ve seen demand.'

New South Wales residents have meanwhile made the most of effectively being confined to their own state during the pandemic.

Qantas launched flights to Byron Bay from Sydney in June for the first time in 15 years, and the airline said frequencies on the route have quadrupled on some days to keep up with demand.

Qantas' most popular domestic routes during September school holidays compared to 2019

1. Brisbane-Cairns – up from 14th last year

2. Perth-Broome – up from 20th last year

3. Brisbane-Townsville – up from 11th last year

4. Sydney-Adelaide – up from 8th last year

5. Canberra-Brisbane – up from 17th last year


1. Melbourne-Sydney

2. Brisbane-Sydney

3. Brisbane-Melbourne

4. Adelaide-Melbourne

5. Melbourne-Perth

Virgin Australia said the Brisbane-Hamilton Island route had become its 'standout performer'.

Other domestic routes created by airlines in response to changing travel habits include Canberra to Ballina on Pelican Airlines, Sunshine Coast to Cairns on Alliance and Canberra to the Gold Coast on QantasLink.

Jetstar is also launching a Gold Coast to Hobart route from December 1.

On Wednesday, Virgin Australia announced it was offering 20 per cent off flights across the country in a bid to stimulate domestic travel during the pandemic.

Until midnight on Friday morning, jet-setters can claim the reduction on selected fares between October 14 and December 9 in both economy and business class.

The offer is only available to customers who use the airline's mobile app.
Virgin Australia has also launched a sale fare of $129 on seats to Hamilton Island from Brisbane as part of a partnership with the Queensland government.

Those fares - which are available until they run out - are for travel dates between October 12 and December 13.

'We expect this service to generate $1.36 million in overnight visitor expenditure over the duration of Queensland Government support,' Queensland’s Tourism Minister Kate Jones said. ... d=msedgdhp

Aussies share heartbreak of being 'trapped' overseas
When nurse Angie Newman rushed back to the UK in July to see her sick parents for what she thought might be the final time, she never imagined she'd still be there.

Mrs Newman has spent $21,000 on flights, but she and her daughter Jess, 15, remain unable to get home to Wollongong, NSW.

She is a permanent Australian resident having emigrated nine years ago, and Jess, who is a citizen, are among thousands of Aussies fighting to get back to the country after leaving during the pandemic.
Despite the government's slight increase in the numbers of Aussies allowed to fly in, the pair has been bumped off three flights by airlines, who must adhere to the strict caps on passengers.

And if a new flight she has planned for Monday doesn't go ahead, she can't find another one until the end of December.

Mrs Newman said the government needs to do more to help Aussies and permanent residents get home.

"I think it's irresponsible," she told

"They're causing disruption to the economy… people can't get back to businesses, children can't access education."

Since the travel ban at the end of March, Australian citizens and permanent residents have needed special permission to leave the country.

Almost 30 per cent of people living in Australia were born overseas, with the biggest number from the UK, meaning there is a chance many might have to leave.

And returning home to a sick family member is allowed if you do the paperwork.

Mrs Newman said she thought that being given the green light to leave would mean she would have no problem getting back in to the country, even though the pair would be required to do hotel quarantine at a cost of $4000.

READ MORE Families separated by South America travel ban might have to wait until the end of the year to get home

But battling to book a flight amid complex travel rules combined with stressful cancellations - some of which she's only found out about on Facebook- has left her in tears.

"It was only when my flight got cancelled on 21 August, I realised, 'oh my god thousands of others are in the same boat'," she said.

Since she got to Scotland, her mother, Suzanne, 72, has gone into a care home and father, Murray, also 72, is also about to move into a special facility.

While Mrs Newman has been able to continue her work in care home compliance - though sometimes has to work through the night- her daughter is really suffering, and has missed months of school.

Her husband Peter, who is waiting for them to return, is also finding it hard to deal with the situation.

Mrs Newman said she has heard people in support groups are being told there are no flights until March.

She called on the Australian government to expand the hotels used for quarantine and raise the "bonkers" caps.

Single dad faces losing his home after mother's death
Single dad William Watkins, 48, rushed back to the UK when his 90-year-old mother died.

Getting permission to leave Australia had already meant he missed saying a final goodbye.

He only planned to stay for a few weeks to help with arrangements and attend the funeral, along with his children.

That was at the start of August, and the Australian citizen said if he can't get back to NSW soon, he faces losing his house as he can't pay the rent.

He can only do limited work on his business producing climbing gear from there, and is missing thousands of dollars income.

Ms Watkins is being paid JobKeeper payments for his extra job at a Sydney climbing gym, but they have now stopped.

"I've got nothing to pay my rent. Therefore I lose my house and everything in it," he said.

He said his children Kai, 19, Lily, 15, need to get back too.

Lily has missed eight weeks of school, and will have to take her exams virtually from the UK.

But Mr Watkins has given up trying to book flights after multiple cancellations and thousands still tied up In tickets. He said he can't afford business class flights, which might help.

While they're able to stay with family in Warwickshire, it's a tough time, especially with coronavirus cases in the UK rising.

He called on the government to raise the caps to let Australians get home.

"It feels like you're homeless. Your brain just goes numb after a while. We've been living out of the same bags for nine weeks," he said.

"It's just a breach of human rights- not being allowed back to your own home.

"Words can't really explain how neglected you feel." has contacted DFAT and the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications which is responsible for the flight caps.

At the start of the pandemic, Aussies on holiday were told to get home by Scott Morrison, but expats living overseas were told to stay where they had a job and support.

But since then, many of those have lost their jobs and need to come home- but can't.

Then there are people like William and Angie who have been forced to visit their home countries more recently.

Almost 30,000 Australians overseas have registered with the government as trying to get home, but it's thought the true number could be much higher.

Charity Amnesty International has even started a campaign on the issue.

It wants the caps raised and hotel quarantine expanded. ... 919380632/
It has also called for charter flights to be arranged, like when Qantas helped Aussies get home from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan in February.

"The Australian government is violating the human rights of thousands of Australians by not letting them back in the country," Amnesty International said in a statement.

"The small increase to the cap hasn't worked - we are still hearing horrifying stories of people struggling overseas. Trapped.

"The answer is for the Australian government to support the states to significantly increase quarantine capacity and to open federal quarantine facilities.

"This will allow a much larger cap increase, or to scrap the cap all together. On top of this, the government need to work with the airlines to ensure that as many people are coming home as possible.

"Thirty people on a flight - as it is now - is ridiculous. The government can also charter flights, and use RAAF resources."

Deputy Labor Leader Kristina Keneally has been campaigning on the issue.

She wants the flight caps raised and rules to stop airlines inflating prices. ... wsrc%5Etfw
Yesterday her motion urging the Morrison Government to bring stranded Australians home narrowly passed the Senate.

But she tweeted the Morrison government voted against it.

As reported by thousands of temporary working visa holders who were overseas when the borders closed also remain trapped abroad.

What are Australia's flight caps?
Strict limits on airline passengers were introduced in July, after Victoria's bungled hotel quarantine, with the government saying it would make it easier for them to handle the process.

Flights were only allowed about 30 passengers each - a far cry from the hundreds normally boarding.

Then, in September the flight caps were raised from 4000 to 6000 per week, spread across most states.

Melbourne is not taking any flights at all until after the hotel quarantine inquiry report. ... d=msedgdhp

MP told Aussie stranded overseas to 'treat virus as big adventure'
A young Australian woman stranded overseas without the right to work during the coronavirus pandemic was told by her Federal MP to "treat the experience as one of life's big adventures", despite her life savings dwindling and mental health being impacted.

Chelsea Dorricott, 23 from Sydney's south, was working at a Canadian ski resort at the beginning of 2020 when COVID-19 first impacted the world and the Australian government advised there was not yet a need to come home.

After that advice changed and the Federal Government declared the spread of the virus a pandemic, Ms Dorricott said cases rapidly appeared at the resort, Australians in Canada exhausted all possible flight options and she had just 10 hours to decide whether to flee Canada for the United Kingdom.

"At that point there were no suitable flights to come home, it was first or business class only – that was a bit of a disaster," she told

"I looked into the UK purely because my dad was born here and so I knew I could apply for a UK passport and then potentially gain a working right.

"Flights (from Canada to the UK) were not affected at all, they were literally $200 as opposed to a $15,000 first class flight to Sydney (and) I have family here and my partner is here."

Ms Dorricott managed to enter the UK visa-free in the hope of applying for a birth-right passport, however when virus cases soared and passport offices closed in April, she was stranded in Southampton without means for an income or viable way home.

She had a flight home booked for September 1 which was abruptly cancelled and rescheduled for October 30, however she says she's not certain that will go ahead.

Ms Dorricott reached out to her local MP, Member for Hughes Craig Kelly, for advice on if she could be taken home as a "priority" passenger.

Under Australia's current international arrival caps, NSW is taking 850 passengers a day, South Australia receives 600 a week, Queensland now takes 500 travellers a week and Western Australia will accommodate the same number by October 12.

In his initial email response, seen by, Mr Kelly told Ms Dorricott the Federal Government is working with states to return as many Australians home as quickly as possible.

"I understand the stress you must be feeling and I know it's easy for me sitting here in Sydney – but try and treat the experience as one of life's big adventures," Mr Kelly said in the email.

"Think of past generations that were trapped overseas for years because of war – they got through it and I'm sure you will too."

Ms Dorricott said when she read the response, she was left "very angry" by what she felt was Mr Kelly's lack of support for a constituent.

"It was just laughable, it was so bad that I couldn't help but laugh and then the first thing that I did was take screenshots of it and send it to all my family," she said.

"I didn't respond to him, I didn't see the point … in wasting my breath in getting worked up in compiling a response that was going to be very negative."

Mr Kelly told he responded in the best way he could for a stressed constituent and said he raised her situation with Prime Minister Scott Morrison yesterday.

"You've got to try and give reassurance and confidence when someone's mentally stressed, you've got to assure them that things are going to be okay and also to try and put it in some context for them," he said.

"Of course it's not an adventure, but when someone tells you that they are feeling very mentally stressed, it's my obligation to try and give that person some reassurance.

"People have been through a lot worse and that's the reason why you will get through this, you will be okay.

"I'm sure she would've loved me to say I can guarantee that you'll get on that flight … but the reality of life is, as much as I'd like to say that, that's something I don't have the power to do and to pretend that I do would be misleading a constituent."

The UK is currently battling the grips of a second wave of coronavirus and the threat of more lockdowns, with cases skyrocketing beyond 14,000 a day.

The growing risk saw Deputy Labor Leader Kristina Keneally and Senator Penny Wong yesterday table a motion in the Senate calling on the government to increase arrivals caps and to put "all options on the table to return stranded Australians". ... wsrc%5Etfw
That motion was passed and presented an idea supported by Ms Dorricott - mandatory self-isolation from home for returned travellers.

"I know they had that and people were being silly and couldn't abide by the rules," she said.

"But I think we're at a point now where the Australians trying to get home are desperate.

"The government just needs to trust we'll do the right thing … the last thing I want to do is give my family coronavirus.

"I've literally never been someone that's struggles with mental health and it's honestly destroyed me, being stuck here."

In response to Senator Keneally's motion, Mr Kelly took aim at Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews for not accepting any returning travellers while the state battles its own second wave of COVID-19, but also said he supports the idea of home quarantine.

"Kristina's from the Labor Party, she should ring Daniel Andrews and demand that he lifts the number of places and starts to create some places in Victoria," he told

"Yes, they made a complete meal of it before, but surely they have learnt from those mistakes and they can start taking more Australians back.

"It's terrible that Australians are unable to come home like this.

"If the states are not able to do that, we've got to look at people from low risk areas — now the UK may not be one — but New Zealand might be, places like Taiwan might be, South Korea might be.

"People coming back from these places where the risk is very, very low, allow those people to go into self-quarantine (at home) and that will then free up more places (in hotels) for people coming back from Europe or France." ... d=msedgdhp
Last edited by kingofnobbys on Thu Oct 08, 2020 8:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Oct 08, 2020 8:15 am


JobMaker incentive in Federal Budget 2020 is leaving people aged over 35 worried — here's why
Melanie Olsen, a 43-year-old mother of two who is looking for work, said even before the Federal Budget she was worried about competing with younger job applicants.

But after the Budget she is even more nervous.

Under the Government's JobMaker Hiring Credit, revealed this week when the Budget was handed down, 450,000 jobs are expected to be created for young people.

The scheme will give $200 a week to employers who hire anyone aged 16-30, and $100 a week for any worker aged 30-35.

For employers to be eligible, new employees must have been on JobSeeker, and be given at least 20 hours of work a week. All businesses except for the major banks can access the scheme.

It will be available to businesses for up to a year.

"Anyone younger is getting jobs over someone like myself," Ms Olsen told the ABC's PM program.

"It doesn't matter if you've got life experience or you've got experience in that field; they want someone either younger who they can pay less and they can train or they've just come out of [university] with a degree.

"It doesn't help with your self-esteem."

After her position was made redundant during the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms Olsen told the ABC she was applying for about 10 jobs a week.

She thought the JobMaker scheme would be a disincentive for businesses to hire workers like her.

As a woman who is over the age of 35, Ms Olsen said there was not enough support.

"The whole thing is depressing," she said.

"There are more and more people losing jobs and there are more and more people every time you apply for a job trying to apply for the same job."

One of Ms Olsen's children is in child care and she said that without additional childcare support, she was worried she was going backwards financially.

"One hundred per cent [we are] going backwards right now," she said.

"Before COVID hit you could have two people in a relationship go out and earn as much money or as little money as they wanted and have families and all of that.

"Then you lose your job because of COVID and depending on what your partner earns, you don't even get anything [because of the JobSeeker partner income test]."

Ian Yates, chief executive of Council Of The Ageing (COTA) said it was concerning the Government only provided supplements to support young people without a parallel for older workers.

"We support the targeting of younger Australians as a vulnerable group. What we're worried about is there's not a parallel targeting for those mature and older workers, who are also and equally vulnerable," he said.

"They find it very hard after economic crises to get back into the workforce at a time when they're trying to support themselves and pay for their retirement."

Mr Yates said older workers "are often the first off to be made redundant".

Federal Budget made one Victorian 'sick in the stomach'
Jeremy Williams is a 49-year-old living in Tullamarine, Victoria.

He was employed at a large commercial furniture manufacturer for 10 years.

But he found himself out of a job in April when the pandemic hit the business hard.

"I was retrenched specifically due to coronavirus," he said.

Mr Williams said he applied for JobSeeker immediately upon being made redundant but says he will not be eligible for payments until November 13.

"To date I believe I got one payment of $150," Mr Williams said.

The situation was made more difficult when he had to use most of his redundancy payout to pay off his credit card debt, leaving him no choice but to access his superannuation.

"Once I found out that I would have no support from Centrelink until November, I realised if I failed to find a job I could not afford to keep paying the interest and stretch my money to [then]."

He said he had managed to find some work, but it was only a trickle.

"I got an ABN and managed to get some work for a chair company in Knoxfield doing an environmental product certification. Such things are slow going. In four months I have only billed $1,800," he said.

Upon hearing Tuesday's Federal Budget, Mr Williams said he felt "sick in the stomach" and did not sleep that night.

"I feel that I am being discriminated against due to my age, as a long-time taxpayer I do not understand how while everyone else in the economy seems to be getting supported, I have not been at all."

"I am a good citizen," he said.

"Now with the supplement to under-35s I think [employers] would be more likely to look for the savings they can get with a younger person."

'I have lost a certain amount of hope'
Lydia Godding says she is lucky to have a roof over her head.

The 49-year-old is currently living with her parents in Brisbane.

Without that fortune she says she would be living out of her car.

Ms Godding spent 25 years in the United States, before returning to Australian in 2018.

She had been working on a casual basis 15 hours per week in retail, but no longer had a job when the company let her go in April.

"As I listened to the presentation of the Budget report last night I was initially encouraged, then devastated at being blindsided by the introduction of the incentive," Ms Godding told the ABC.

"What employer is going to hire me when they can get someone under 35 and cash incentives at the same time?"

Not wanting to be defeated by the pandemic, Ms Godding told the ABC she was actively looking for a job and had applied to go to university.

However, she admits the uncertainty of the future is a major concern.

"I have lost a certain amount of hope in being employed for the next 20-plus years and retiring," she said.

"Finding a job I am more than capable of doing and being able to be less reliant on my parents and government assistance is looking more bleak and depressing."

Albanese says he fears people will be driven into poverty
The Federal Opposition has targeted employment and job security in its critique of the Federal Budget.

Labor leader Anthony Albanese highlighted workers over 35 as a major flaw in the budget while speaking on AM on Wednesday morning.

"JobKeeper and wage subsidies will end in March. The unemployment benefits are going back to $40 a day, driving people into poverty," he said.

"And if you're over 35, you'll be competing against people who are being given some wage support. So, you'll be at a disadvantage."

Mr Albanese said there were around 928,000 people who were currently aged over 35 and on unemployment benefits.

"We don't think those people should be just thrown on the scrap heap. We want to see people put into work, young people as well as older workers."

Shadow Treasurer Jim Chalmers and the Shadow Minister for Employment and Industry, Brendan O'Connor, were just as critical in their assessment of the Federal Budget.

The pair released a joint statement claiming the Government was "excluding" people like Melanie Olsen and Jeremy Williams.

"If Scott Morrison was serious about driving down unemployment and kickstarting the recovery, he would not be excluding almost a million Australians," they said.

"These Australians are rapidly approaching the JobSeeker Christmas cliff with no certainty about the future of their support payments and will now find themselves competing with a subsidised younger workforce."

Could JobMaker cost older Australians the jobs they already have?
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg completed the usual post-Budget day media tour on Wednesday, spruiking the Government's plan for Australia's economic future.

During his appearance at the National Press Club, the Treasurer was quizzed about the possibility of employers rorting the system.

Mr Frydenberg says businesses that take up wage subsidies for hiring young workers will be subject to a two-pronged test to make sure they are not rorting the new scheme.

He was asked if businesses could fire an older staff member and hire a younger employee, whose wages would be subsidised, in their place.

"Based on the numbers as at the end of September the headcount [of staff] has to be higher and the payroll needs to be higher," the Treasurer replied.

"That is the integrity test that is designed to support additional people coming into a business."

Employment Minister defends Government's focus on young people
A disproportionate number of young people out of work and an existing program for older Australians is why JobMaker is aimed at 16- to 35-year-olds, the Employment Minister Michaelia Cash said.

"We know that young people have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 and the Government wants to avoid the scarring that happens when young people lose work in recessions and struggle to return to the workforce," Senator Cash said.

"But this is not at the expense of mature-age employees."

Senator Cash pointed to an existing program called Restart that provided businesses with up to $10,000 if they hired older workers.

"This helps eligible job seekers who are aged 50 or over and have been on income support for six months," she said.

"And it's actually helped over 50,000 mature-age Australians get a job in recent years."

What is the Restart program?
The Restart wage subsidy was announced by the Federal Government in the 2014 Federal Budget — the first budget delivered by then-prime minister Tony Abbott and then-treasurer Joe Hockey.

The scheme offers a financial incentive of up to $10,000 for employers to take on a worker aged 50 or older.

Similar to the JobMaker scheme, the employee must average 20 hours of work per week.

The scheme requires the worker to be employed for 26 weeks before the employer receives the money.

There is also a training program for those over the age of 45 who are seeking a job.

More than 6,000 people have participated in the Career Transition Assistance (CTA) program since it was expanded in 2019, according to the Department of Education, Skills and Employment.

Around 950 of these participants signed up in June because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the department says. ... d=msedgdhp

Scott Morrison rejects criticism he's neglecting older Australians with JOBMAKER
Scott Morrison has accused Labor and unions of pitting the young against older workers after warnings youth wage subsidies exclude people aged over 35.

At a press conference on Thursday, the prime minister brushed off calls for more safeguards in the $4bn jobmaker hiring credit as Labor sharpens its attack about workers left behind and the potential for abuse of the new program.

Although Labor has decided to support the government’s plan to accelerate income tax cuts and more than $30bn in business tax concessions, it has not reached a final position on the hiring credit program, which is contained in a separate bill.

In addition to voting through the Coalition’s higher education reforms on Thursday afternoon, the Senate agreed to return for an extra day’s sitting on Friday to deal with the omnibus tax bill and hiring credit bill.

Guardian Australia understands the opposition will consider pushing the bill to a Senate committee for further scrutiny and the Australian Council of Trade Unions is pressing Labor and the crossbench to amend it.

Labor and the ACTU are concerned credits of $200 a week for those aged 16 to 29 and $100 a week for those aged 30 to 35, do nothing for those aged 36 and over and may incentivise businesses to lay off older workers.

The shadow employment minister, Brendan O’Connor, has also raised concerns that the hiring credits bill gives the government power to introduce any form of payment to encourage job creation or workforce participation.

The bill contains none of the program’s safeguards, giving the government a blank cheque to change its rules or introduce new programs without approval from parliament.

O’Connor told Guardian Australia the scheme “encourages insecure work” and there is “nothing stopping the government handing a blank cheque to distribute to whichever businesses in whichever electorate they see fit” under the current bill.

“This government has a terrible track record when it comes to doling out funding – think sports rorts.

“It is important that this new wage subsidy scheme is designed properly and with integrity and we will continue to ask to see details of the proposed scheme from the government.”

The president of the ACTU, Michele O’Neil, told Guardian Australia “There are serious flaws in the jobmaker scheme as it stands.

“The program gives employers the ability to replace full-time jobs with multiple part-time or casual jobs, and will not create the secure jobs which we need to restart the economy.

“Working people need safeguards to be put in place to this potentially damaging program.”

Labor’s shadow treasurer, Jim Chalmers, told Guardian Australia the government’s “decision to deliberately exclude 928,000 Australians from jobmaker [hiring credits] will keep the unacceptably long jobless queues even longer”.

“If Scott Morrison was serious about driving down unemployment and kick-starting the recovery he would not be leaving almost a million Australians aged over 35 behind.”

The Coalition has promised two safeguards – that businesses must increase both their payroll and headcount to be eligible – and points to existing protections against unfair dismissal in the Fair Work Act and age discrimination.

But even employers privately concede that youth wage subsidies will skew hiring decisions, giving the young an advantage over other groups at risk of long-term unemployment including people with a disability over 35 and people over 55.

Morrison told reporters in Canberra that encouraging hiring of young people was “exactly what the hiring credit is designed to do” and argued the safeguards would “ensure that it is not abused”.

“Youth unemployment rate is more than double what the national unemployment rate is,” he said.

In September youth unemployment was 14.3%, more than double the general rate of unemployment (6.8%).

Morrison warned that youth unemployment “sets people up for a life of welfare dependency” and claimed the Coalition had reduced welfare dependency to 30-year lows.

Related: Older women and disabled people hardest hit by Australia's assault on welfare

However, according to a recent Parliamentary Budget Office paper, the unemployed are spending longer on benefits than ever before. This was particularly true for women over 45, with the PBO paper showing the proportion of women in this age group on jobseeker benefits increasing sevenfold since 1991.

Morrison said the budget was “for all Australians” and aimed to bring Australians together.

“There will be voices that will try and set young people against older people, women against men, jobs in one sector versus jobs in another sector – they are the voices of division that will undermine the future economic prosperity of all Australians.”

Morrison said the unnamed “voices of disruption [and] division” and “come to this place to fight, not to build”. ... d=msedgdhp

Concerns about lack of social housing spark homelessness warning
A sharp rise in homelessness during the coronavirus pandemic will be made worse by the federal budget's failure to directly invest in social housing, advocacy groups warn.

Community Housing Industry Association of Victoria chief executive Lesley Dredge said the federal budget was a "missed opportunity" to invest in desperately needed social housing and generate jobs in construction.

"When financial support disappears through JobSeeker and JobKeeper, it's going to be fairly horrific," she said. "It's going to be like falling off a cliff."

The budget included an additional $1 billion in low-cost finance to encourage the construction of affordable housing, but Ms Dredge described this "an additional $1 billion in debt".

Launch Housing chief executive Bevan Warner said Australia was staring at a homelessness crisis because not enough was being done to increase the supply of social housing.

Research commissioned for the organisation shows that before the coronavirus pandemic, about 290,000 Australians were homeless, an increase of 14 per cent in the four years to 2018-19.

In Victoria, more than 45,000 households are on the social housing waiting list and since the pandemic there has been a 14-fold increase in the number of people Launch Housing has placed in emergency accommodation.

Mr Warner expects this demand will grow as households cut back expenses and flock to cheaper rental properties.

"People will have less money in their pockets and there will be fewer options to be housed, as other economic casualties of the recession shuffle back and take up all the low-income housing options," he said.

Federal Housing Minister Michael Sukkar said while the delivery and construction of social housing was the responsibility of state and territories, the Morrison government was making significant investments in the sector.

"The Morrison government is doing more in the social and affordable housing space, particularly through community housing providers, than any other federal government before us," he said.

He said the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation estimates that by providing an additional $1 billion of low-cost finance in this year's budget, 2500 new and existing affordable homes could be supported by community housing providers.

But Council to Homelessness Persons deputy chief executive Kate Colvin said low-cost debt was not enough to provide affordable and social housing.

"There's a gap between what it costs to operate and build social housing and what people can afford to pay in rent," she said.

This, she said, was why government investment was so important.

She said 433,000 new social housing properties were needed across Australia, and governments should start reducing this backlog by building 30,000 more dwellings over the next four years.

University of Melbourne economist Professor Lisa Cameron said the budget had "completely neglected" social housing despite huge demand and increasing rates of homelessness.

"A lot of people were highlighting the need for action on social housing and the government just chose to ignore that advice," she said. "It seems like such a missed chance to do something significant that would really improve people's lives and boost the economy."

Property Council of Australia chief executive Ken Morrison said while he welcomed the additional funding in the budget to provide low-cost finance for community housing providers, more work was needed.

"We'll continue to advocate for measures which incentivise the private sector to deliver more affordable housing, especially for key workers and older people at risk of homelessness, and to do this at scale," he said.

While federal Labor has proposed a $500 million plan to repair thousands of public housing dwellings, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews hinted that social housing was something he was looking at "very, very closely" in the upcoming state budget.

Almost 2000 people are living in hotels across Melbourne after the state government funded rooms for the city's homeless during the pandemic. ... d=msedgdhp
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Oct 08, 2020 8:37 am








CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Fri Oct 09, 2020 2:40 pm


Victoria records 11 new coronavirus cases as Melbourne rolling average falls to 9.4
Victoria's Chief Health Officer says officials are "throwing absolutely everything" at new outbreaks in the state, as another case is linked to the regional town of Kilmore and the Box Hill Hospital outbreak grows to four cases.

The state recorded 11 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, including nine in metropolitan Melbourne and one where the location is still being investigated.

The new case in Kilmore, north of Melbourne, is linked to a cluster that started when an infectious person from Melbourne's Chadstone Butcher Club outbreak dined in the town.

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said it was the first non-staff member infected inside the Kilmore cafe.

"We think it’s a casual contact of the cafe, a direct casual contact of the cafe, so someone who went in for a short period of time," he said.

Nearly 680 people have been tested in Kilmore over the past three days, after anyone who visited the Oddfellows Cafe between September 30 and October 3 was classed as a potential close contact and asked to get tested, even without symptoms.

But some residents have reported receiving conflicting advice from different health agencies.
CHO promises to address conflicting advice given to close contacts
Angela Lawton, who ate at the Oddfellows Cafe on Thursday before giving birth to her son on Friday, said she did not find out she was a close contact until after she was discharged on Sunday.

"It was pretty terrifying," she told ABC Radio Melbourne. "Everything's a bit surreal after you have a baby anyway, with all the sleep deprivation.

"It was just extremely scary to think about the possible ramifications for myself and my family and the wider community given that I was in the maternity ward for a couple of days."

Ms Lawton has since tested negative for COVID-19, but said she was initially made aware of the risk through Facebook and the work of the Oddfellows Cafe owner.

"She had been amazing, and I know the staff there were wonderful about enforcing guidelines and doing everything they could to reduce risk in the time leading up to this exposure," she said.

"So we actually were able to find out a full day and a bit before we were contacted by the Government due to Kim's effort in spreading the word and minimising the risk."

Ms Lawton said on Tuesday the state's coronavirus hotline had told her she should only get tested if she had symptoms.

When asked about the conflicting advice, Professor Sutton said the way outbreaks were being managed was changing to a more "comprehensive and precautionary" approach.

"There are some elements to work through between the advice that's been given centrally and regionally, and we will take those lessons and hear the feedback," he said.

He apologised for any confusion but said the public health team was "committed to making it right".

Two consecutive days without a COVID-19 death for first time since July
No coronavirus deaths have been reported in Victoria for the second consecutive day.

The last time Victoria reported no coronavirus deaths across consecutive days was before July 10.

Since then, at least one death has been recorded every day except for July 13, September 15 and October 5.

The new case in Kilmore brings the number of active cases in regional Victoria to five, but that total includes what might be a false positive reported in Mildura yesterday.

Premier Daniel Andrews said that "weak positive" was still being investigated, but was included in the total of active cases out of "an abundance of caution".

Metropolitan Melbourne's rolling 14-day case average is 9.4, down from 9.7 yesterday, while regional Victoria's remains at 0.4.


Two mystery cases with an unknown source have dropped off Melbourne's two-week total since yesterday, bringing it to 12.

The mystery case number reflects infections with an unknown source recorded between September 23 and October 6.

There are now 195 active coronavirus cases in Victoria — the first time there have been fewer than 200 active infections since June 26, Mr Andrews said.

Nearly 15,600 COVID-19 tests were processed overnight.

Source of new hospital cluster still unclear as staff get tested
Six of the new cases are linked to known outbreaks, and the other five are still being investigated.

They include one new case linked to the Chadstone Butcher Club, one linked to the Frankston family outbreak and two linked to Uniting AgeWell in Preston.

"They are complex outbreaks, they are challenging, but we are throwing absolutely everything at them," Professor Sutton said.

The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is investigating an outbreak linked to the Box Hill Hospital in Melbourne's east.

Victoria records 11 news coronavirus cases but no deaths
A coronavirus outbreak at Box Hill Hospital in Melbourne's east has grown to include two staff members and one patient
A coronavirus cluster at a Melbourne hospital is threatening to derail the city's road out of lockdown as Victoria records just 11 new cases and no deaths.

The cases, which were announced on Friday, take Melbourne rolling average to 9.4, while regional Victoria's average remains at 0.4.

The city needs to have to have a 14-day rolling average of fewer than five cases to be able to take the next step out of lockdown on October 19.

Victoria's Deputy Chief Health Officer Allen Cheng said it would be a 'day-by-day assessment of the situation' as to when further restrictions are lifted.

Health authorities have been scrambling to contain an outbreak which has emerged at Box Hill Hospital in the city's east.

A patient and two staff members at tested positive to the virus, but the outbreak is believed to be contained to just one ward.

It is not clear how the outbreak began.

An investigation has been launched and contact tracers deployed to contain the cluster.

Authorities are tackling a much larger outbreak linked to the Butcher Club at Chadstone Shopping Centre, which has infected 31 people and spread to Frankston in the southeast and Kilmore in the north.

The Kilmore cluster began when a person infected with COVID-19 linked to the Chadstone outbreak dined at the town's Oddfellows Cafe, in a breach of restrictions, on September 30.

More than 200 people who visited the cafe between September 30 and October 3 are self-isolating after a staff member contracted the virus.

Nearly 500 people have been tested in Kilmore since Tuesday, with an additional positive case linked to the cafe announced on Thursday.

In a post on The Oddfellows Cafe's Facebook page, the business confirmed a second staff member had tested positive along with a confirmed case of a family member.

The premier sought to reassure Victorians some restrictions will be eased as planned on October 19, although it looks unlikely Melbourne will reach its required case load targets in time. ... d=msedgdhp ... d=msedgdhp

There are now 4 active cases linked to that outbreak, including three staff and one patient, but the source has not yet been confirmed.

Professor Sutton said all staff had been tested, and all close contacts had been asked to quarantine.

"We will get on top of it," he said.

Up to 30 per cent of cases could go undetected, CHO says
Under Victoria's roadmap to reopening, the state needs to record a 14-day average below five, and a two-week mystery case total below five, for Melbourne to have further restrictions lifted this month.

This step was originally scheduled for October 26, but late last month Mr Andrews said it might be as soon as October 19.

Mr Andrews said the outbreaks in Frankston, Chadstone and Kilmore showed how much the situation could change in a week, and any decisions would not be made until closer to the date.

"It's not possible for us to give people a full week's notice," he said.

"We've just got to wait for the most complete picture."

When asked about what the restrictions might look like for Halloween, on October 31, Mr Andrews said he expected rules around mask-wearing and the 5km travel limit could still apply.

Professor Sutton said the aim was still to hit an average of five new cases per day, but he was reassured by the number of new cases currently linked to outbreaks.

"They're more reassuring than a case that just pops up in the community where we've got no idea where it has come from," he said.

Professor Sutton said up to 30 per cent of coronavirus cases in the community could be going undetected on days when testing numbers were low.

"I don't think it's a huge number," he said. ... d=msedgdhp

Victoria Covid hotspots: list of Melbourne and regional case locations
List of case locations in Victoria
If you were at the following venues on these dates, you should watch for coronavirus symptoms and, if symptoms occur, immediately get tested and stay at home while you wait for your results.

Woolworths, 313 Victoria Street, Abbotsford: 26 September 12-12.15pm and 28 September 1pm-1.15pm
Woolworths, 551-557 Warrigal Road, Ashwood: 29 September
White Line Tyres, 73 Carrier Street, Benalla: 30 September 12-3pm
The Butcher Club, Chadstone Shopping Centre, Chadstone: 23-26 September
Chadstone Shopping Centre Fresh Food Precinct, Chadstone: 23-26 September
Coles, Chadstone Shopping Centre, Chadstone: 27 September
Woolworths, Chadstone Shopping Centre, Chadstone: 5-5.30pm 27 September
Coles, Westfield Southland, 1239 Nepean Highway, Cheltenham: 4.45-5.15pm 2 October.
Dan Murphys, Doveton: 12.30-3pm: 27 September
Chemist Warehouse, 415 Springvale Road Forest Hill: 11:30-11:50am, 5 October
Leo’s Fine Food & Wine Supermarket, 2 Summerhill Rd Glen Iris: 26 September 12-2.20pm
Galbally Reserve, 19 Arthur St Hughesdale: 27 September
Aldi, 466-468 Cheltenham Road, Keysborough: 1 October 3.45-4pm
Oddfellows Cafe, 36 Sydney Street Kilmore: 30 September 7-10am
Lilydale train, Lilydale: 12.15pm 23 September
Hedgley Dene Gardens, Malvern East, 10.30-11.30am: 27 September
Coles, Victoria Avenue, Mitcham: 3.15pm 19 September, 2pm 23 September
Flinders Street Train, Mitcham, 2pm 23 September
Narambi Station Reserve, 15 Narambi Rd Mornington, 26 September 1-2pm
Coles, Victoria Gardens Richmond, 29 September 1-2pm
Continental Mart, 219 Springvale Road, Springvale: 12.30-3pm 27 September
Woolworths, 302 Springvale Road, Springvale: 12.30-3pm, 27 September
Sunbury train, between Ginifer and Footscray stations: 4-6pm 22 September
419 bus, Sunbury, Craigiburn and Upfield Line, between Broadmeadows and North Melbourne: 28 September 1-3pm and 29 September 1-3pm
Coles, 29 Douglas Parade Williamstown: 30 September 12.17-12.20am.
Coles, Brandon Park Wheelers Hill, 27 September 1.30-2.30pm
Aldi, Brandon Park Wheelers Hill, 27 September 2.40-3.00pm
Strawberry Point Fruit and Vegetable Shop, Brandon Park Wheelers Hill, 3.05-3.20pm 27 September ... d=msedgdhp

Strict new mask rules to come into effect in Victoria
Victorians will no longer be allowed to wear bandanas, scarves or face shields as the two-week grace period for the state's strict new mask change comes to an end on Sunday at 11.59pm.

Premier Daniel Andrews today reminded Victorians they must wear a fitted mask after the deadline or risk being fined by police.

Mr Andrews said health advice around masks had changed, with bandanas, scarves and face shield no longer being "sufficient".

"Scarves and bandanas in the early stages was an appropriate response," he said. "That advice is now changed. We have given the two-week period.

"All Victorians must wear fitted masks when they leave their homes. "As restrictions ease and movement increases, the effectiveness of masks is even more important and obvious."

The Victorian government has also ordered a further 1.2 million fitted, reusable cloth masks from local and new factories.

Victoria recorded 11 new cases of COVID-19 and no new deaths today - the same figures as yesterday. ... d=msedgdhp

'Less intrusive' coronavirus saliva tests could be rolled out in more Victorian settings, Health Minister says
Victoria's Health Minister says a "less intrusive" but "equally effective" coronavirus saliva test could be rolled out in more settings by the end of the year.

Research by the Doherty Institute in Melbourne has found the saliva tests could be an equivalent alternative to the nasal and throat swab commonly used to detect the virus.

A pilot test program was rolled out at three police stations in September and tested 1,000 asymptomatic officers for two weeks, finding two positive results.

Health Minister Martin Foley said the results of the trials at the police stations in Bendigo, Melbourne's CBD and Dandenong showed the saliva test was "looking very good".

The saliva tests will be used as part of a mass coronavirus surveillance program of high-risk workplaces, which began this week.

Other high-risk workplaces such as meat, poultry and seafood processing, and the supermarket and refrigerated distribution sectors, will be required to test 25 per cent of the workforce each week using a standard nasal swab.

The Government has said there will be 200 saliva tests conducted at Hazeldenes poultry farm on the outskirts of Bendigo from next week.

"That will be less intrusive but equally effective as the current standard PCR test," Mr Foley said.

While health authorities have continued to urge anyone with symptoms to isolate and be tested, the workplace surveillance program targets asymptomatic workers.

Those without symptoms are not required to isolate after the test.

Mr Foley said it was hoped the saliva tests would make it easier for workers to participate.

"We're hopeful that [saliva tests] will increasingly become part of the options that our testing teams have right across the state, probably by the end of the year," he said.

Saliva tests 'probably fairly equal' to nasal swabs: DCHO
The saliva tests have been used since late June. At that time, Doherty Institute research found the saliva test had a sensitivity of about 87 per cent, meaning the nasal swabs remained the "gold standard".

Different sample collection and testing methods are being used this time around, the institute says, and the test results have so far been positive.

The police station trials found the preferred method of saliva testing was a swab that people suck under their tongue for five seconds.

"There had been concern that there wasn't as much virus present in saliva as there was when you take a nasal swab, but obviously the Doherty [Institute] and other researchers around the world have been refining that," Victoria's Deputy Chief Health Officer Allen Cheng said.

"And now it's probably fairly equal, so we can get equivalent results from saliva as from a nasal test."

The saliva samples are analysed using the same polymerase chain reaction (PCR) systems as the nasal and throat swabs most commonly used in Australia.

The Government says more than 95 per cent of test results are returned in under 24 hours in Victoria. ... d=msedgdhp


Whistle Blower Claims staff in Victoria's 'hot hotels' worked at multiple places
A whistleblower has revealed Spotless employees worked as security guards in Alfred Hospitals just days after working shifts in Victoria's quarantine hotels.

<< a huge covid outbreak happened at Alfred Hospital and other hospitals in Melbourne about this time. ... d=msedgdhp

( Ex-Vic Health Minister ) Jenny Mikakos hits back at Daniel Andrews over responsibility for hotel quarantine
Former Victorian health minister Jenny Mikakos has urged the hotel quarantine inquiry to “treat with caution” premier Daniel Andrews’ evidence about the decision to use private security guards, as she pushes back on his claim she was responsible for the botched program.

Mikakos resigned from the ministry and the Victorian parliament last month after Andrews told the inquiry he believed she was responsible for overseeing the hotel quarantine program, once a joint submission to the crisis council of cabinet was made by her and jobs minister Martin Pakula in early April.

The inquiry has heard 99% of the more than 18,000 cases of Covid-19 and 750 deaths in Victoria since late May can be traced back to outbreaks in two quarantine hotels involving several security guards from private firms.

Counsel assisting the inquiry has not determined who made the decision to recruit private security, instead suggesting the inquiry find that it was a “creeping assumption” made throughout the course of 27 March – the day the program was announced.

However, in a stunning rebuke of her former leader, Mikakos told the inquiry in her final submission that such a finding would have “insufficient regard to the realities of governmental operation and decisionmaking” and pointed to Andrews referencing the use of private security in his press conference announcing the program at 3pm on 27 March.

Mikakos said the inquiry should “treat with caution” Andrews’ claim that no decision had been made about private security at that time.

“It is submitted that had the decision not already been made by that time, the premier would not have announced the use of private security in the program,” she said.

“In this regard, it is observed that no evidence was led about what briefings were provided to the premier by his office in advance of that media conference.”

None of the premier’s staff were called before the inquiry to provide information as to their involvement in the development of the hotel quarantine program.

Mikakos told the inquiry her resignation should not be viewed as an admission of responsibility, and pushed back on Andrews’ claim that she held sole responsibility for the operation of the program from 8 April, because many of the contracts, including for security, were held with the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions, and the minister, Martin Pakula.

“It would be a nonsense, it is submitted, for the DHHS [Department of Health and Human Services], and through it, Ms Mikakos, to be considered to be solely responsible and solely accountable for the hotel quarantine program during the relevant period, by reason of the DHHS’s ‘control agency’ status in respect of the pandemic as a whole,” she said.
“The DHHS held no contracts with the hotels, nor with security guard contractors or providers of cleaning services, and was not responsible for contract management in respect of those services.”

Mikakos put blame for the lack of oversight of the program back on Andrews in the development of the program, and because it did not go through the regular cabinet committee process in March.

“The haste with which this program was established saw the usual Cabinet processes subverted with the premier, through the Department of Premier and Cabinet (DPC), tasking the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions (DJPR) with responsibility for its design and implementation,” she said.

Mikakos maintained she was not aware private security was being used in the hotels until the outbreaks, and then she “acted swiftly to take decisive action on those matters, bringing in Alfred Health after the Rydges outbreak and seeking an alternative workforce to security guards after the Stamford outbreak.”

The final report of the hotel quarantine inquiry is due to government on 6 November. ... d=msedgdhp


Echuca-Moama ( twin-river / border towns ) tourism takes another hit as Riverboats Music Festival, and Southern 80 waterski race are cancelled
Where is Echuca - Moama ? I hear you ask :

Been there many years ago on a family driving holiday , the location is a famously good Murray cod fishing location and a very nice place to visit.

It has been a tough year for the border towns of Echuca and Moama; between coronavirus restrictions and the closure of the New South Wales-Victoria border, they have not only lost visitors but seen their ways of life changed.

Now, the twin towns have been dealt another blow with the news that two of their largest events will not take place next year due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Organisers behind the Riverboats Music Festival and the Southern 80 waterski race, which both take place in February each year, have cancelled the events for next year and are instead looking towards planning for 2022.

Founder of Riverboats Music Festival David Frazer said the team made the decision with a heavy heart.

"It's a big blow," he said.

"It was going to be our 10th anniversary, so we were planning something really special.

"Arguably, this is probably the most challenging year any of us will ever experience for people in our industry and across tourism."

Steve Shipp is the president of the Moama Water Sports Club which runs the Southern 80 and says the event's cancellation is a big loss for the community.

"Millions and millions of dollars come into the economy from these two events," he said.

"The Riverboats is a great event, followed by the Southern 80 — it's going to be hard for all the retailers in town.

"It's a lot of money that we are missing out of the economy."

'Recovery can't happen unless restrictions ease'
The COVID-19 restrictions in Victoria and the border closure have thrown up a lot of challenges for tourism and hospitality operators.

Chief executive of Echuca Moama and District Tourism Association Kathryn Mackenzie says the limited number of people able to dine in at restaurants and cafes, and regional Victorians outside the 'border zone' unable to travel into NSW, means local businesses are still struggling.

"We may look as though we're full and hospitality is buzzing," she said.

"[But] with the reduced capacity, our operators in hospitality post-JobKeeper can probably not keep their businesses running on those levels of restrictions."

Ms Mackenzie said the border closure issue was a challenge during the recent Victorian school holidays.

"We had many, many requests for our visitors to cross the border and they couldn't," she said.

"So, it impacted their experience here but also a number of them decided they would holiday elsewhere."

'We will hold something'
Ms Mackenzie said following the cancellation of the two events her phone was immediately ringing off the hook.

She said the planning had begun to pull together a different event for early next year.

"We will hold something next year," Ms Mackenzie said.

"It may not be as big as the two events that are cancelled, but we will be asking our very loyal visitors to return, and we will be looking at what we can hold."

No matter what the rest of this year, and next, have in store, Ms Mackenzie is sure the community will bounce back. ... d=msedgdhp

Floods across south-west Victoria after average monthly rain falls in two days
Residents in the Warrnambool suburb of Merrivale evacuate pet chickens from floodwaters.

Where is Warrnambool ?

Rivers continue to rise in south-west Victoria, threatening homes, closing dozens of roads and inundating farms in the worst flood event in the region in a decade.

The State Emergency Service warned rivers, including the Merri and the Moyne, had already risen to heights similar to the floods in 2010, which affected more than 167 properties.

The SES responded to 160 requests for help in south-west Victoria on Thursday and Friday, more than half of which were for flooding-related emergencies.

North of Warrnambool, Woodford residents are dealing with flooding from the Merri River after the area exceeded its average October rainfall in just two days.

Woodford Primary School was forced to close — ironically due to a lack of water.

Flood levels reached a storage area under a high verandah where the school's water pumps and tanks are located, but teacher David Atkinson said the damage was minimal.

"There's no damage [to buildings, but] the playground's under water, the sandpit's gone, the cubby houses are lost, and the fence is just gone," he said.

"We had floods in 2011 and 2016, but this is worse — it's flowing much quicker and higher.

"We're anticipating it will get higher, but the school is safe."

Where's my cubby house?
Woodford Primary School students were sent home after their playground and oval were inundated.

However, one student returned to a rude surprise — his cubby house was upside down and flooding with water.

"Our house has got flooded, and all of our backyard is gone," six-year-old Will Kenwright said.

The primary school student said he was excited to return home early, but recalled with dread watching his cubby house being swept away by floodwaters.

"First it kind of turned, then it was bobbing," Will said.

"The tennis court has flooded, everything has flooded."

Waters still rising
The Moyne River reached 4.37 metres and was steadily rising throughout Friday.

SES south-west regional duty officer Bradley Jew said the SES had received multiple call-outs to properties in Port Fairy and Warrnambool.

"It's caused a bit of grief overnight," Mr Jew said.

"The issue with Port Fairy this morning is it's getting quite close to the levels we saw with the 2010 floods and similar with the Merri River."

The 2010 floods that swept the region were the worst Victoria had seen in 15 years with the Army forced to step in to help evacuate residents.

Mr Jew said Warrnambool's suburbs of Dennington and South Warrnambool were areas of concern, despite the rain easing.

Warrnambool received 56mm of rain in a three-hour period after midnight on Thursday.

"There has been a lot of water come down into those catchment areas and unfortunately it does take a while for that to come down that river system," Mr Jew said.

"We are seeing the effects of what fell a couple of days ago.

"Unfortunately it's probably going to get a bit worse before it gets better."

The SES is urging residents to check the Vic Emergency App regularly and to avoid flooded roads.

"Obviously there are a lot of inundated roads out there and we want to reinforce, please don't drive through the floodwater," Mr Jew said.

Roads, farms flooded
Port Fairy's SES controller, Steve McDowall, said their crews had been flat out since the early hours of Thursday.

"The Moyne River for Port Fairy is rising rapidly," he said.

"There's water across the road in several locations … anybody travelling today, I would suggest they check the routes and allow more time."

Dozens of roads have been impacted across Moyne Shire, with residents urged to check the shire's Facebook page for information.

Former Moyne mayor and farmer Daniel Meade said October rain is normally welcome.

"I think the amount we've had this week is probably enough for farmers around the district — hold off a couple of weeks," he said.

'A sight to behold'
Warrnambool resident Judy Mills said her backyard, which is adjacent to Russells Creek, was entirely flooded.

"[A neighbour's] place looks over the valley of the Merri River and it's completely covered in water — it's a sight to behold," she said.

Ms Mills said the Merri's floodwaters were approaching a new housing estate near the Warrnambool Golf Club.

"I'm not sure how much more water we're expecting, but they'd have to be a little bit worried, they're new houses," she said.

Woolsthorpe farmer Graeme Glasgow said he recorded more than 140mm of rain over the past five days, and the rising waters of Spring Creek had flooded his paddocks and washed away fences.

"I shifted the cows, they were down near the creek, I shifted them away, and again in the afternoon, just to make doubly sure to get them well away," Mr Glasgow said.

"There's a not lot you can do."

Flash flooding in Coleraine
In the early hours of the morning a flash flood warning was issued for Coleraine due to water levels in the storm water system.

"Luckily we've managed to get on top of that and it should be downgraded later on today," Mr Jew said.

He said roads in the area were heavily inundated by the flash flooding.

"There are still some low-lying roads that may still have some water on them, but the water is slowly subsiding," he said.

The latest information and flood warnings can be found . ... d=msedgdhp
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:00 pm


NSW records 10 cases overnight
Friday October 9: NSW has recorded 10 new COVID-19 cases overnight, 5 of which were community transmission, with another 5 in hotel quarantine.

Sydney nurse at St Vincent's Hospital tests positive for coronavirus, NSW Health says contact tracing underway ... 3683200000
"Three of these are household contacts of a case reported yesterday and the fourth is a co-worker of a case reported yesterday.

"There are now seven cases associated with this cluster."
The five cases are all linked to known clusters.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she was still intent on easing some restrictions despite the new cases.

Four of the new cases have been linked to a private health clinic cluster, with three being household contacts of a case reported yesterday and one a co-worker from another clinic of the same provider.

NSW Health said the fifth new local infection was most likely an old case acquired in August and can be linked to the Liverpool Hospital cluster.

Five returned travellers in hotel quarantine also returned positive results.

There were 12,868 people tested across the state yesterday.

Ms Berejiklian said she was still looking at what social distancing restrictions could be eased in her state, despite a resurgence in locally acquired infections this week.

"The advice we get from health is always evolving depending on where we are in the pandemic," she said.

"I'm always concerned when we have new cases of community transmission, [but] it shouldn't preclude us looking at what opportunities we have in the next few weeks."

Ms Berejiklian said her Government was getting advice from health experts and economists.

4 of the new locally acquired cases reported today are associated with the private health clinic cluster in Liverpool, she added.

"We haven't ruled out any further easing of restrictions," she said.

"We are considering what will happen in the next few days and beyond."

Sydney outbreak spreads
NSW health has issued alerts for another Sydney restaurant, seven train services and two bus services linked to the state's newest cases of COVID-19. ... d=msedgdhp
NSW health has issued alerts for another Sydney restaurant, seven train services and two bus services linked to the state's newest cases of COVID-19.

Health authorities also issued a public health alert for locations visited by a positive case on October 5:

Palm Beach Fish and Chips on October 6, from 3.45pm to 4.00pm
S-mart Eastwood on October 5, from 7.30pm to 7.45pm
Aldi Eastwood on October 6, from 11.00am to 12.00pm
Westfield Parramatta on October 6, from 12.00pm to 12.15pm
Westfield Parramatta on October 7, from 12.00pm to 12.30pm and 4.30pm to 5.00pm
NSW Health said anyone at these locations is considered a casual contact and should monitor for symptoms and get tested as soon as any appear.

Meanwhile, the border stoush between NSW and Queensland appeared to have a hit a new low with the Queensland Health Minister accusing NSW of "giving up" on achieving 28 days of no community transmission.

Ms Berejiklian described the comment as "really offensive" and said her Government had developed a "world class" strategy to deal with the pandemic.

"Look anywhere around the world, where we have a population the size of New South Wales, where we have the open economy that we do and the way that we're dealing with the virus," she said.

"I think all of us here can feel proud of what we've achieved."

In response to the ongoing Queensland and WA border closures, Ms Berejiklian said it would be "really easy" for her to turn away travellers from other states for hotel quarantine.

"At least 40 per cent of people who come to Sydney are in hotel quarantine from other states," she said.

"Look at what we are burdening in NSW, look at the GST contribution you get from us… and just move a little bit."

Since yesterday NSW health authorities have also found a new infection on board a ship that travelled from Brisbane to Newcastle with international mariners onboard.

Chief health officer Kerry Chant said 14 crew members were swabbed yesterday and one tested positive for COVID-19.

"It was initially thought that that test result was reflecting an old infection but further testing has had to be underway because the test results are still inconclusive," she said.

Dr Chant said the boat did not pose a risk to the community and would remain docked in Newcastle while further testing was completed. ... d=msedgdhp ... d=msedgdhp

New cases still don't preclude possibility of easing restrictions: Berejiklian
Premier Gladys Berejiklian says her government has not ruled out the easing of coronavirus restrictions despite a slight uptick in new cases in New South Wales in recent days.

"I'm always concerned when we have new cases of community transmission but it shouldn't preclude us from looking at what opportunities we have in the next few weeks," she said.

"The health experts and economists are giving dual advice on what we can consider in the next few weeks."

The state recorded five new cases of community transmission overnight but all originated from known clusters.

Ms Berejiklian said the state had demonstrated a world-class system, urging the Palaszczuk government to compare the NSW health response with that of any other country with a similar-sized population, as she continued to push Queensland to open its borders. ... d=msedgdhp

Mask use going backwards, customers not signing in: 'Complacency and apathy' hits NSW
Premier Gladys Berejiklian has moved to address complacency towards coronavirus in Sydney, telling businesses they face significant penalties and harsher rules if restaurants and cafes continue to flout COVID-19 protocols.

The warning came as NSW recorded eight new locally acquired cases on Thursday in two separate clusters - the highest number in the past three weeks. It also emerged that mask use by passengers on Sydney's public transport network was going backwards.

Ms Berejiklian said the government would consider the compulsory use of Service NSW's QR sign-in code in all venues after a positive case visited a restaurant which did not collect details of all diners.

The Premier said her patience was wearing thin after it emerged NSW Health was struggling to contact all the patrons who dined at the popular restaurant Ripples in Milson's Point when a confirmed case attended the venue on the night of October 3.

"Can I make it very clear that if any business has found to have been negligent in their responsibilities or fail to have a COVID safe plan, the full force of the law will come down on them," Ms Berejiklian said.

Ms Berejiklian said she has received advice from health authorities that some businesses were not properly implementing their COVID-safe plans.

"Everybody has had ample notice to register to get information with those COVID safe plans in place, and when organisations go beyond complacency and don't fulfil those obligations, well, they let everybody down," she said.

New alerts issued for multiple venues, transport routes
NSW recorded 12 cases to 8pm on Wednesday. Four of those cases were in return overseas travellers, and three of the local cases had been reported by media on Wednesday.

The eight new locally acquired cases from two separate clusters. Five have been linked to a known cluster, and the remaining three were linked to each other.

NSW Health has not ruled out the possibility of linking all eight cases to the one cluster. The smaller cluster included two private healthcare workers who work in a Liverpool clinic, and a household contact of one of those workers.

One of the new cases was in a student who recently attended the Macquarie University campus in Sydney's north-west.

NSW Health has advised anyone who attended the following venues to monitor for symptoms and get tested immediately if they develop.

Macquarie University Sports and Aquatic Centre outdoor pool area on Wednesday October 7 from 5.30am to 10.30am
Surf Dive 'n' Ski at Castle Towers on Monday October 5 from 12pm to 5pm
Chemist Warehouse Epping on Tuesday October 6 from 10.30am to 11am
On Thursday evening, NSW Health advised that anyone who was at Monopole Restaurant, Potts Point from 6 to 8pm on the evening of Sunday October 4 should monitor for symptoms, as NSW Health say they will contact close and casual contacts directly. They also outlined a number of public transport services:

Train from Parramatta at 14:41 arriving Town Hall 15:31 on 4th October
Train from Town Hall at 17:29 arriving Kings Cross 17:50 on 4th October
Train from Artarmon at 23:18 arriving Central 23:48 on 5th October
Bus replacement from Central at 23:48 arriving Strathfield 00:15 on 5th October
Train from Strathfield at 00:15 arriving Parramatta 00:45 on 5th October
Bus 550 from Epping Station, Beecroft Rd, Stand D at 17:08 to Smith St after Phillip St, Parramatta 17:41 on 6th October
Train from Moss Vale 04:52 arriving Liverpool 07:09 on 6th October
Train from Liverpool 16:58 arriving Moss Vale 19:12 on 6th October
Train from Moss Vale 04:51 arriving Liverpool 07:08 on 7th October
Train from Campbelltown 13:31 arriving Moss Vale 15:50 on 7th October
Virus 'as deadly now as it ever was'
Transport Minister Andrew Constance said mask use on the public transport network was in decline as complacency creeps across the city.

As workers begin returning to the CBD, Mr Constance said it was important commuters wore masks as Sydney recorded new community transmitted coronavirus cases.

"I think it's only natural that, with the warmer weather, with people looking to get out and about a bit more, that complacency creeps in and we can't afford it. It's as deadly now as it ever was," Mr Constance said.

He said the government was considering whether it could increase services in a bid to maintain social distancing on the network.

"We know we're going to see more people coming into town, we are looking at what we can do in terms of summer services to increase the frequency of services," he said.

"There's a need to get people back into the city, town is very quiet, we've got to get strong economically again."

NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard said cafes and restaurants needed to be more vigilant if they wanted to remain open during the ongoing pandemic.

"Can I ask all restaurants and cafe owners to really step it up, it's time to get serious," he said.

"We have talked about complacency and I will add apathy to that. I think it is time businesses were taking it far more seriously than they are.

"If we think back to where most of the cases have been over the last few months, it has been in venues where people have been out enjoying themselves, pubs and restaurants and so on."

Mr Hazzard said if businesses wanted to remain open, they would be "well served to make sure someone greets the people as they come to the door and make sure they use the hand hygiene before they walk in and make sure they do the QR code".

"In my normal life, I am pro-supportive business, but as Health Minister I am pro-supportive keeping people safe and I think the businesses need to remember there was a period not that long ago when they were closed," Mr Hazzard said. ... d=msedgdhp

NSW Covid hotspots: list of Sydney and regional case locations
List of case locations in NSW
If you have visited the following locations then you are considered a close contact and must immediately get tested and isolate for 14 days since you were there, and stay isolated for the entire period, even if a negative test result is received.

Fitness First Carlingford Pilates Class, Carlingford: Saturday 3 October, 8.15am to 9.15am
Ripples restaurant, Milsons Point: Saturday 3 October, 8pm to 10.30pm
NSW Health is assessing potential exposure to Covid-19 of people who attended several other venues. Anyone who attended the following venues is considered casual contacts and should immediately isolate and get tested even if they develop the slightest symptoms of Covid-19.

Artarmon Mazda service centre, Campbell Street, Artarmon: Friday 2 October, 7.30am to 9.30am
Castle Towers Shopping Centre, Castle Hill: Monday 5 October, 12pm to 1pm
Surf Dive ‘n’ Ski, Castle Towers Shopping Centre, Castle Hill: Monday 5 October, 12pm to 5pm
Chemist Warehouse, corner of Bridge and Rawson Streets, Epping: Tuesday 6 October, 10:30am to 11am
Kmart, Narellan Town Centre, Narellan: Friday 2 October, 6pm to 7pm
Macquarie University Sports and Aquatic Centre outdoor pool area, North Ryde: Wednesday 7 October, 5:30am to 10:30am
Penrith Homemaker Centre, Penrith: Sunday 4 October, 11am to 1pm
Guzman y Gomez, Penrith: Sunday 4 October:, 1:30pm to 2pm
Home Co, Penrith: Sunday 4 October, 2pm to 2:30pm
Westfield Parramatta: Monday 5 October, 9:30am to 11am
Monopole restaurant, Potts Point: Sunday 4 October, 6pm to 8pm
Anyone on the following public transport routes is also considered a casual contact and should immediately isolate and get tested even if they develop the slightest symptoms of Covid-19.

Train from Parramatta at 14:41 arriving Town Hall 15:31 on 4th October
Train from Town Hall at 17:29 arriving Kings Cross 17:50 on 4th October
Train from Artarmon at 23:18 arriving Central 23:48 on 5th October
Bus replacement from Central at 23:48 arriving Strathfield 00:15 on 5th October
Train from Strathfield at 00:15 arriving Parramatta 00:45 on 5th October
Bus 550 from Epping Station, Beecroft Rd, Stand D at 17:08 to Smith St after Phillip St, Parramatta 17:41 on 6th October
Train from Moss Vale 04:52 arriving Liverpool 07:09 on 6th October
Train from Liverpool 16:58 arriving Moss Vale 19:12 on 6th October
Train from Moss Vale 04:51 arriving Liverpool 07:08 on 7th October
Train from Campbelltown 13:31 arriving Moss Vale 15:50 on 7th October
If you live in or have visited these local government areas in the past two weeks, get tested if you have any Covid-19 symptoms, even if mild, and self-isolate until you get your test result.

Liverpool LGA
A known case travelled on a train on Saturday 3 October that left Parramatta station at 7.13pm and arrived at Milsons Point station at 8.04pm. Anyone who caught the train at this time is considered a casual contact and must monitor for symptoms and get tested immediately if they develop.

There is an alert for passengers and crew on a Jetstar Flight JQ510 flight from Melbourne at 11am on 27 September to Sydney. However, NSW Health say there is no ongoing risk of infection to the general public, and the majority of passengers on the flight are already undertaking mandatory hotel quarantine. ... d=msedgdhp

Concerns over Box Hill Hospital outbreak
A patient and two staff from Box Hill hospital are at the centre of a new COVID-19 outbreak ... d=msedgdhp

St Vincents Hospital
NSW health authorities have issued a public health alert after a nurse at a Sydney hospital tested positive to coronavirus.

The casual nurse worked a single shift at St Vincent's Hospital on October 7 while infectious and provided specialised care to a single patient.

The case will be reported in Saturday's numbers.

In a statement, NSW Health said the nurse also had "limited contact with a very small number of colleagues".

"Contact tracing is underway and the source of the infection is under investigation, though it is believed the source of infection occurred outside the hospital," the statement said. ... d=msedgdhp

NSW contact tracers unlikely to make border deadline
Queensland's deadline for NSW contact tracers to find the source of the latest outbreak is just hours away, with the border likely to remain closed past November first. ... d=msedgdhp

NSW Health Minister labels Queensland border closure 'cruel' as more cases confirmed
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard has again criticised Queensland's border closure saying without a change in the rules, the issue "could go on for years".

Mr Hazzard also claimed he knows Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk's border closure is a "political exercise" and not based on health advice.

Under Queensland's road map to recovery, the state has said it will not reopen to NSW or Victoria, respectively, until the states record 28 consecutive days without a case not linked to a known cluster in the community.

However, in news which surprised the NSW government this week, these cases must be classified as such within 48 hours of being recorded.

On Thursday, NSW recorded 12 new cases of COVID-19. Three were in return travellers, but the remaining eight were locally acquired.

Five of those local cases have been linked to the Liverpool dialysis cluster. The remaining three, which are linked to each other, have not yet been linked to an existing outbreak.

Speaking on Today, the Health Minister repeated his comments from Thursday that the border closure is "cruel".

"It's not evidence-based ... she wants to look tough for Queensland residents," he said, adding: "If she keeps this up and we don't have a vaccine ... this could go on for years. This is a silly game you shouldn't be playing. She's playing with people's lives."

Mr Hazzard said he understood the need to be cautious, but "based on criteria she's plucked from nowhere", Ms Palaszczuk's state could still be closed to parts of the country in five years time.

Speaking on RN Breakfast later in the morning, Mr Hazzard said the health of Queenslanders was not the reason for the closure.

"The reason is she is in an election phase, and she is playing games with the Queensland community," he said.

Asked by host Hamish McDonald how he knew that, Mr Hazzard said: "I have the evidence but I'm not going to share that."

"If it were that it was based on sound medical advice, of course we would accept it," he said.

The Health Minister said the timing of Queensland's possible border reopening of November 1 - the day after the Queensland state election - provided further evidence the closure was political.

"I would just remind her that many families who live in NSW have Queensland origins and have Queensland family members," Mr Hazzard said.

It comes as workers on a floor of a northern Sydney office building were directed to self-isolate, after a co-worker tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday evening.

A later identified coronavirus case worked at the Datacom contact centre at North Ryde while infectious, chief executive Greg Davidson confirmed.

"We have taken further precautionary measures to close the entire floor where the person was working until further notice and have sent all our people home to self-isolate and get tested," he said.

Mr Davidson said most of the IT services company's Sydney employees had been working from home, but some roles required staff to work in the office.

Anyone directed to self-isolate was doing so on full pay, he added. ... d=msedgdhp
Last edited by kingofnobbys on Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm
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Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:30 pm


Queensland achieves 28 days without coronavirus community transmission as NSW border decision expected at end of October
Queensland will make a decision on whether to reopen the state's border to all of New South Wales at the end of the month as authorities closely monitor contact tracing efforts.

Health Minister Steven Miles said it was "disappointing" to hear the New South Wales Government had "effectively given up on the goal of 28 days of no unlinked transmission".

The Queensland Government has demanded NSW record 28 days of no unknown community transmission before the border would reopen.

Speaking this morning, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she took offence at Mr Miles' comments.

"I find that comment really offensive to be honest," Ms Berejiklian said.

"Our aim has always been to have zero community transmission. That's why all of us work day and night, and have been battling for months and months to get to that aspiration.

"The other question is, is it realistic for 28 days, in a state the size of NSW, when we have an open economy?

"I would say that's a very high benchmark."

In response, Mr Miles said Queensland "will not be lectured to by NSW".

"This is the state that gave us the Ruby Princess, the state that had those aged care outbreaks," Mr Miles said.

"We have avoided those situations in Queensland precisely because we have aimed to suppress every outbreak of community transmission.

"That's what we've done and we've done it successfully.

"And as I said, I was pretty disappointed to hear the Premier of NSW say that she doesn't even aspire to do that."

Queensland records zero cases
The latest cross-border stoush came as Queensland reached 28 days without community transmission with the state recording another day of zero new coronavirus cases.

Queensland's Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young announced the latest cluster linked to Brisbane's correctional training academy in Wacol was officially over.

"I can declare that last cluster totally over so that is a really good thing," Dr Young said.

She said authorities "need to wait a bit longer" before deciding whether there is a need to change the planned November border reopening to NSW.

Dr Young said NSW had "extremely good" contact tracing capability and authorities would continue to monitor the situation south of the border.

"We use that 28 days of no unlinked community cases to assist us in determining whether it's safe at that point in time, at the end of the month, to open to another state," she said.

"That has stood us very, very well in Queensland.

"They do have a concern which they're well aware of and well on top of at the Liverpool Hospital and also at a private clinic."

Dr Young confirmed there was only one case which had an unknown link in NSW.

"Although they [NSW] are finding the contacts ... they are getting continuing cases so we will just have to watch and see what happens," Dr Young said.

"We also want to see significant testing. There's no point having a bland 28 days of no community-acquired unlinked cases if you don't have testing in place.

"They also have sewerage testing, which has proved to be a very useful strategy."

Dr Young said a crew member aboard a ship off the coast of Weipa on Cape York returned a positive coronavirus test result on Thursday.

The ship has previously recorded two cases of COVID-19.

She said the person was tested again and the result came back negative.

"At this stage, we're just working out whether he might be a persistent shedder that's previously had the infection and recovered, but persistently shedding ... or whether indeed it's a false positive," she said.

"He's perfectly well and he's isolating in his cabin, and we'll work out whether we need to evacuate him from that ship or not.

"We will continue to test the remaining crew on that vessel."

Four coronavirus cases remain active across Queensland.

'We have not been intimidated by the Prime Minister'
Meanwhile, Dr Young said brain cancer patient Gary Ralph would be able to isolate at home, subject to conditions.

It comes after Mr Ralph was initially denied an exemption to isolate at home and had been told to catch a taxi or Uber to receive chemotherapy treatment while in hotel quarantine.

"I asked one of the senior doctors at the PA [Princess Alexandra Hospital] to go and assess him last night and based on that advice, this morning I've said he can quarantine at home," she said.

"There are a few conditions on that — I've asked for an urgent COVID test to be done on him and his partner this morning.

"We're waiting on those results, if those are negative we've organised an ambulance to assist him."

Mr Miles denied he had received a phone call from the Prime Minister about Mr Ralph's case.

"Throughout, we have not been intimidated by the Prime Minister or the other bullies in the federal coalition," he said.

"We have taken the health advice and that's precisely what we have done here and I'm really pleased with this outcome." ... d=msedgdhp

Queensland Covid hotspots: list of Brisbane and south-east Qld case locations
Hotspots and case locations
There are currently no alerts for suburbs or hotspots in Queensland.


Queensland delays border stance as 48-hour deadline passes
The argument over the NSW-Queensland border and a 48-hour deadline imposed on health authorities to track down mystery cases is no closer to being resolved.

NSW recorded five new cases of community transmission today, with all linked to known clusters. There are also five cases in hotel quarantine.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she still is unsure where the deadline has come from.
"I still don't know where they got that 48-hour time limit from because as we've seen during the pandemic sometimes it takes health just a few hours to identify a known link or a known source, and sometimes it takes up to days and weeks but I don't have an issue with that," Ms Berejiklian said.

"I still don't know where the Queensland government got that 48-hour deadline from. It was completely new to me.

"I think it demonstrates there's an attitude of wanting to stick to your decision not withstanding whatever else is happening and I think that's the case."

But Queensland Chief Health Officer Jeanette Young said today she "discussed this with the Chief Health Officer in NSW (Dr Kerry Chant) yesterday".

"A decision was made nationally that the 48 hours would start from when the case interview has occurred," she said.

"And that makes sense because that is when you have got the information from the patient about where they had been and where they might have contracted it."

She also said said health authorities will "wait a bit longer" before deciding on whether to push back the planned border reopening with NSW.

She said good progress had been made in NSW and praised their contact tracing of new COVID-19 cases.

"They have found links for seven of the eight cases that they notified yesterday," Dr Young said.

"NSW has extremely good contact tracing capability and they're using that at the moment.

"We just need to wait a bit longer before we decide whether or not there has been any need to change that planned opening to NSW that at this point in time is planned for the 1st of November

"We use that 28 days of no un-linked community cases to assist us in determining whether it is safe at that point in time at the end of the month to open to another state."

The current benchmark REQUIRED BY QLD HEALTH is 28-days without community transmission. ... d=msedgdhp

'Qld will not be lectured to by NSW': Steven Miles hits back at Hazzard
Queensland Deputy Premier Steven Miles has hit back at NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard – who called Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk cruel for her hard border stance – saying the state “will not be lectured to by New South Wales”.

“This is the state that gave us the Ruby Princess, the state that had the aged care outbreaks,” he said.

“We have avoided those situations here in Queensland precisely because we have aimed to suppress every outbreak of community transmission.

“As I say, I was pretty disappointed to hear the premier of NSW say she doesn’t even aspire to do that.”

Meanwhile, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she was surprised by the Queensland government handing them a 48-hour deadline to trace the source of new mystery cases to prevent resetting the 28 day clock to reopen borders.

“I still don’t know where the Queensland government got that 48-hour deadline from,” she said.

“It was completely new to me, I’d never heard it before.

“As we’ve seen during the pandemic, sometimes it takes health just a few hours to identify a known link or a known source and sometimes it takes up to days and sometimes weeks.”

Queensland Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young said the 48-hour deadline – which was handed to NSW on Wednesday – would be extended until Monday 12 October. ... d=msedgdhp

Victorian show workers sent packing over COVID-19 border breach in Mackay
Showfest rides setting up at the Mackay showgrounds where last night workers were deported for breaching the border
14 Victorian-based show workers have been booted from the Mackay Showgrounds and ordered out of Queensland after entering the state with the wrong border passes.

Police removed the amusement operators from Mackay Showgrounds on Tuesday night after they travelled from Victoria, arriving Monday, and tried to set up rides for the show.

Show organisers called police, who evicted the interlopers from the site and into quarantine at an unidentified location, where they were tested for COVID-19. All returned negative test results, police said, and were heading for the border.

Manager of Mackay's Showfest, Lance Collyer, told the ABC the workers were not part of his operation that also ran a show in Rockhampton.

"They shouldn't have been here. As soon as we found out they were on site, we had the police involved," he said.

"It's very frustrating because we have been working hard to bring this show here, we've all just got to do the right thing.

"Unfortunately some people aren't willing to do the right thing, so we are having to make them do the right thing."

Mr Collyer said the rides they attended were not a part of the show and had not travelled with them.

"We had a few rides that weren't authorised to come on to the showgrounds," he said.

"The police came down and we've been working with the police to escort them off the premises and secure the site."

Health Minister Steven Miles said the workers had been ordered back across the border.

"Police have identified a crew of show support staff who travelled from Victoria to Mackay in order to assist with a show there," he said.

"They were travelling on the wrong border pass and it is now a police matter.

"They have all been tested for COVID and they are negative."

Dr Miles said police were now investigating the workers who applied for a freight permit, which was not the one needed to transport the rides across the border.

"Police quarantined them while they were tested and now they've asked them to return outside of Queensland," he said.

"What it underlines is that our systems are very effective at identifying when people have travelled inappropriately.

"It's probably the case that if the show had worked with our public health units and within their COVID Safe Plan and demonstrated a need for specialist, essential workers to come from another part of the country, then they could have received an appropriate permit, but in this case it wasn't the appropriate permit and they've been asked to leave Queensland." ... d=msedgdhp
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Fri Oct 09, 2020 5:19 pm

NT removes Sydney from coronavirus hotspot list
Sydney residents will be able to enter the Northern Territory without entering two weeks of quarantine from today.

The move will make it easier for Sydneysiders to enjoy a Top End holiday.

Greater Sydney was declared a hotspot area by NT officials on July 17.

The decision to lift it comes despite NSW recording 12 new infections yesterday.

NT health authorities said they took the decision after they were briefed by NSW officials who showed that the current COVID-19 cases in Sydney were linked.

The decision also means anyone from Sydney already in quarantine in Darwin will be allowed to leave today.

He urged any Sydneysiders in the NT who showed coronavirus symptoms to get tested.

The NT has also removed other communities from its hotspot list.

From November 2, residents in regional Victoria will be able to travel north.

The NT will also welcome New Zealanders once the Trans-Tasman bubble is established from October 16.

Territory tourist operators had been pushing for the easing of border restrictions to help regenerate the local economy. ... d=msedgdhp


'Quarantine rave' TikTok video emerges
An apparent "quarantine rave" inside the Howard Springs quarantine facility in Darwin is being investigated by police, the Northern Territory Government says.

The investigation follows the emergence of a TikTok video showing a group of people — some of whom were not wearing masks or adhering to the 1.5-metre physical distance requirement — dancing together outside their rooms within the facility.

People quarantining at the facility have been provided with facemasks that NT Health says "must be worn at all times" when people are outside their rooms.

Robert Parker, head of the Australian Medical Association's Northern Territory branch, criticised the behaviour seen in the video.

"Quarantine is quarantine, it's not a holiday," Dr Parker said.

He said the video was "probably the tip of the iceberg" of potential poor behaviour at the facility and said he was disappointed at the conduct of people seeking to enter the NT.

"This bug is potentially very dangerous, and we have a very vulnerable population [in the Northern Territory]," he said.

"People should be sticking to their pods."

Dr Parker said the video suggested security at the facility could be improved to ensure those staying there abided by the rules of health authorities.

The offices of Chief Minister Michael Gunner and Health Minister Natasha Fyles directed questions about the incident to the Government's COVID-19 Operations Centre.

A spokeswoman for the centre declined to answer questions about the incident on Friday, saying a police investigation was underway.

Anxiety as Sydney arrivals flow into NT
Dr Parker also said he was "very concerned" about the NT reopening its borders to Sydney today as NSW health authorities confirmed five new locally acquired COVID-19 cases.

The Northern Territory Government yesterday confirmed it would push ahead with plans to reopen its borders to Greater Sydney, allowing all new arrivals from New South Wales to travel freely throughout the NT without undergoing quarantine.

He said Sydneysiders should have remained barred until more was known about a case at the city's Macquarie University.

On Thursday, Macquarie University's vice-chancellor confirmed a student had tested positive and NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she was expecting to see more cases linked to the Liverpool Hospital cluster in the coming days.

"We need to wait for a week," Dr Parker said.

"Macquarie University could potentially be a major outbreak."

However, epidemiologist Mary-Louise McLaws from the University of NSW said the situation was under control.

"I don't believe its a risk of spreading into the Northern Territory," she said.

Professor McLaws said although there had been eight new locally acquired infections in the 24 hours to 8.00pm on Wednesday, most of the cases could be traced back to two clusters.

Five of the eight are linked to a the Liverpool Hospital cluster, and the other three cases are connected, although the original source is still being investigated.

Professor McLaws said there would continue to be the "occasional" COVID-19 case in New South Wales due to its large population size and contact tracing in the state was very good.

Northern Land Council chief executive Marion Scrymgour said while she was reassured by Professor McLaws' comments, she remained cautious.

"I, like most of the Aboriginal sector, have a lot of concerns … we need to make sure our mob are going to be safe," she said.

"The fear is that if it spreads, and it gets into a community, it would be catastrophic."

Ms Scrymgour said there would be a permit system in place for people visiting remote communities, but urged travellers to listen to health advice and to stay home if they were unwell.

"At the end of the day, it gets down to, if people are coming into the Northern Territory, they have to do the right thing," she said.

"And if they are not doing the right thing, there's got to be some consequences for that."

But John Paterson from the Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory said the Government's decision to push ahead with the border reopening was alarming.

"We should have just waited a couple of more days — 48 hours — and over the weekend and review it again early next week and see what's going to happen early next week," Mr Paterson said.

Yesterday, NT Deputy Chief Health Officer Charles Pain said the decision to lift the hotspot was "considered carefully" and was safe because the Sydney outbreak is "controlled and contained".

"The actual definition for a hotspot which we have been working on for some time … is five cases in a local area of community transmission. So we're nowhere near that threshold," he said.

"This is a key message to us all. We will see these cases, we don't know where they will pop up, we don't know when they will happen so we have to be vigilant about this."

In response to questions about why the Government did not hold off on re-opening the border to Sydney, the spokeswoman said they had been following the advice of "trusted health experts" throughout the pandemic and that would continue.

"Every time we've made a change based on expert advice, we've been told it is the wrong decision. But we continue to be the safest place in Australia," she said. ... d=msedgdhp

ACT relaxes COVID-19 rules as Canberra marks almost 90 days since last reported coronavirus case
If you feel your loved ones have been a little distant lately, now is a chance to rejoice: ACT Health is relaxing its four square metre rule, after the 89th day of no new recorded cases of COVID-19 in Canberra.

From 9:00am on Friday, the social distancing requirement will be halved to one person per two square metres of space when outdoors, allowing for restaurants, cafes and other entertainment venues to bring in more patrons.

Last week ACT Health announced Canberra would move to stage 3.2 restrictions from Friday in part because cases over the border had remained low.

"Over the past week, we have taken our time to thoroughly assess the public health risks. We are now happy for all venues to have one person per two square metres in outdoor spaces, up to a maximum gathering size of 200 people," Chief Health Officer Dr Kerryn Coleman said.

"Given our COVID-19 situation remains stable, I am confident we can increase the density of people outdoors, and do so in a safe manner with appropriate COVID safety plans in place."

The four square metre rule remains in place for indoor venues, but indoor stadiums, theatres and other venues will be able to fill seats to 50 per cent capacity.

Advice to keep 1.5 metres distance where possible also remains.

[ACT - coronavirus cases special]
King O'Malley's managing director Peter Barclay said he would be able to double the number of people using the bar's beer garden to 150.

He said it was a great step forward for the sector.

"The whole of the hospitality industry is happy to see the easing of restrictions," Mr Barclay said.

"It's going to help our industry enormously and we'll be able to have more guests at all our venues in a safe manner.

"Hopefully this is the turning point where we can get back to more normal."

Concern remains for recent NSW cases
Despite Dr Coleman's decision, she said people needed to continue to monitor themselves closely for symptoms, especially if they had recently left the ACT.

NSW today confirmed eight new locally acquired cases in the state.

The sources of those cases have been traced to Liverpool Hospital, Macquarie University, Ripples restaurant in Milsons Point and at least one other source under investigation.

Dr Coleman said Canberrans needed to consult the health websites of any state they had visited or intend to visit to see where recent cases had been detected.

"The advice on affected areas is changing regularly, so keep up to date with the latest advice," she said.

"Please be mindful and aware of how easily the virus spreads." ... d=msedgdhp


Hundreds of Orford residents stuck as heavy rain washes away bridge on Tasmania's east coast
The collapsed bridge "washed away" near Orford.
A family of four are among the hundreds of people stranded on Tasmania's east coast after a road bridge collapsed in heavy rainfall.

The Orford Rivulet bridge at Rheban Road washed away yesterday afternoon, cutting off around 400 shacks and homes to the town centre and the rest of the state.

One Hobart family was hoping for a relaxing time away during the school holidays and had planned on returning home this morning.

Yoga instructor Trish May said she had had to reschedule her classes for today, but remained positive about the situation.

"We're just trying to work out our meals and supplies now that we're here," she said.

"We've got some wine and nibbles so we should be OK."

She said the kids were hoping to get an extra day of school holidays.

"Now they're going, 'Oh maybe we'll get Monday off school'," Ms May said.

"But we'll push them across on a kayak before that happens."

The bridge was under construction when heavy rain fell across Tasmania's east coast yesterday.

Since 9:00am yesterday, the area has received more than 50 millimetres of rain.

Glamorgan-Spring Bay Council General Manager Greg Ingham said it was unfortunate they had experienced this weather in the midst of constructing the bridge, turning the creek into a "raging river".

"You could basically say the bridge has washed away," he said.

"Certainly, it is totally inaccessible — you wouldn't be able to get any vehicle through there."

Mayor Robert Young told ABC Radio Hobart that a replacement bridge was expected to be installed by Saturday, but locals are utilising the still-standing pedestrian bridge in the meantime.

"The locals have organised a shuttle service of their own volition," he said.

"People have been going back and forth picking up those coming from town and taking them to the beachside areas and the southern part of the municipality".

Mr Young felt the community was banding together, with one local farmer even offering access over his paddocks should the need arise.

Construction worker Benjamin Phillips said his team had started rebuilding the bridge this morning despite the rain forecast.

"We're meant to get a bit more rain again this afternoon but hopefully it's not going to be too much," he said. ... d=msedgdhp
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
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Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Fri Oct 09, 2020 5:45 pm


Australia records second day without COVID-19 death for first time in three months
Australia reported its second straight day without any COVID-19 deaths on Friday, the longest stretch without any fatalities from the virus in three months.

Australian states and territories reported 16 cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, down from 28 on Thursday, and no deaths for two days, the first time Australia has gone 48 hours without a COVID-19 death since July 11.

The results cement optimism that Australia has contained a second wave of COVID-19 infections.

"These are the results that come from a really determined effort to defeat this second wave," Victoria state Premier Daniel Andrews told reporters in Melbourne.

Australia has reported more than 27,000 coronavirus infections and about 900 deaths - far fewer than many other developed countries. ... d=msedgdhp

Australian federal budget found to be the most secretive ever produced
The federal budget is the most secretive ever produced, hiding a series of expenditures from the public, including the amount taxpayers are spending to secure an offshore floating oil platform abandoned by a resources corporation in the Timor Sea, new analysis suggests.

he Australia Institute on Friday released analysis of the frequency with which budget items were marked “not for publication”, a redaction commonly used where figures are classified, still under negotiation, or commercial in confidence.

The analysis found the term “not for publication” or “nfp” appears 384 times, topping the prior record of 321 in 2017-18.

The redacted items include the cost to taxpayers of a maintaining an abandoned floating oil platform, known as the Northern Endeavour floating production storage and offtake facility.

Northern Endeavour sits in the Timor Sea, moored permanently between the Laminaria and Corallina oil fields, and was left in an uncertain state after the liquidation of the Northern Oil & Gas Australia group of companies, which last owned it.

The federal government announced in February it had struck an agreement with Upstream Production Solutions (UPS), in an attempt to secure the platform following the failure of the Northern Oil and Gas Australia group.

The Northern Endeavour is not producing anything.

The government is also now paying for advice from Woodside Energy, a previous owner, about what to do with the platform.

“As a previous owner of the Northern Endeavour, Woodside is well placed to provide timely, detailed advice,” the resources minister, Keith Pitt, said in August.

The budget papers say the figure Australia is paying to maintain and secure the platform is “commercial in confidence”.

“Despite taxpayers paying for this potential environmental disaster, the costs of it are not published in the budget papers,” the Australia Institute’s analysis says.

The budget has also hidden costs of an equity injection for the inland rail project – a Nationals-championed project that has prompted some controversy – and expenditure relating to the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation.

Several matters that involve “legal sensitivities” have also not been published. That includes costs associated with the settlement of class actions in Oakey, Williamtown and Katherine over the Pfas toxic firefighting chemical scandals linked to military bases.

The amount used to settle some Territory-based child abuse claims outside of the national redress scheme has also been hidden, and the government has also not published the amount it has spent bringing trapped Australians overseas during the Covid-19 crisis.

The Australia Institute’s analysis recognises there are “legitimate reasons for keeping some budget measures confidential”.

But it says the overall trend for items not for publication in the budget is increasing.

“Various examples suggest transparency is being reduced as a result of the increasingly frequent use of not for publication items in the budget papers,” the analysis says.

Rod Campbell, the Australia Institute’s research director, said the public should be concerned at the erosion of transparency in the budget papers, which were “an important part of democracy in Australia”.

“While numbers move around each year, the trend is clear – items deemed ‘not for publication’ are on the increase,” he said.

“In budgets after the global financial crisis there were less than 100 mentions of ‘not for publication’ in the key budget papers. Now we’re at 348.” ... d=msedgdhp

Teenagers who did not get JobKeeper set to benefit most wage subsidy
Teenagers who missed out on JobKeeper are set to benefit hugely from the government's new wage subsidy scheme, experts predict.

Tuesday's federal budget contained a hiring credit policy to get young JobSeekers back into work after the coronavirus recession.

The scheme pays companies $200 per week for every JobSeeker they hire aged 16 to 29 and $100 per week for every new worker aged 29 to 35, as long as they work 20 hours.

Dr Shane Oliver, Chief Economist at AMP Capital, said teenagers stand to benefit the most.

'I think it will mainly help the ultra young with part-time jobs such as teenagers working at supermarkets, restaurants and in retail generally,' he told Daily Mail Australia.

'These people may otherwise have been locked out of the workforce so in that sense I think it's a positive move.'

Casuals who worked for the same company for less than a year did not qualify for JobKeeper and were instead forced to claim JobSeeker.

Dr Oliver said the subsidy scheme, which at $4billion is far cheaper than the $100billion JobKeeper policy, is about getting those people off the dole and back into work.

Some economists have said a subsidy may not help because hiring is driven by demand which is down during the recession - but Dr Oliver dismissed those concerns.

'The government would say that's why it's part of a package including measures to stimulate demand such as tax cuts and investment incentives,' he said.

'The budget has delivered $160billion of stimulus this year alone. It's hard not to see people spending some of their tax cuts and companies investing more.'

ACTU president Michele O'Neil has raised concerns that companies will rort the scheme by sacking workers and replacing them with young JobSeekers to get the subsidy.

'The concern is that the scheme will be rorted to replace existing workers and to have multiple insecure jobs,' she said.

But Peter Strong, CEO of the Council of Small Business Org­anisations Australia, said those claims were overstated.

'It's a lot harder managing two staff than it is one. To do that so you can get money is just ridiculous,' he said.

The scheme only lets a company qualify for the subsidy if their overall headcount and payroll total is increased.

Experts say companies that typically employ lots of young workers, have high rates of staff turnover and are in a position to hire more people will benefit the most.

Coles and Woolworths hired 20,000 new workers as shopping surged in the first few months of the coronavirus pandemic.

Next year, Woolworths plans to open as many as 20 new supermarkets and 30 Metro stores, creating thousands of new jobs.

McDonald's, which has 105,000 employees and 80 per cent under 21, also stands to benefit.

The fast food chain is planning to open another 25 stores and is expected to be hiring in the coming months, with each store creating about 100 jobs.

A franchise that takes on 20 new workers who qualify for the $200 subsidy will get $208,000 a year from the government.

The policy will allow franchisees to pay an 18-year-old on 20 hours just $5 an hour, with the government making up the rest of the $15 wage.

A McDonald's spokesman said there will be more jobs available for Australians over the next year.

'We will continue to grow our business and open new restaurants in the year ahead,' the spokesman said.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Wednesday that the policy, which lasts for one year, is designed to reduce youth unemployment and get people off benefits.

The youth unemployment rate is 14.3 per cent, more than double the general 6.8 per cent rate.

'Youth unemployment sets people up for a life of welfare dependency,' he said. ... d=msedgdhp

Budget brings 23,000 home care packages
Providers say even that number won't come close to eliminating the wait list with more than 100,000 older Australians waiting for their approved level of home care. ... d=msedgdhp

Budget 2020 disappoints many experts and builders with its lack of big infrastructure projects
Massive infrastructure projects, such as building Sydney's now world-famous Harbour Bridge in the 1920s and the Snowy Mountains Scheme, which started in 1949, were central to Australia's post-war economic recoveries.

Infrastructure was again tipped to help rebuild Australia out of the COVID-19 recession.

But Tuesday's budget did not include any big-ticket building announcements.

The Government has boosted the $100 billion over 10 years it committed last year with a string of smaller announcements, increasing funding by another $10 billion.

"There were increases, sure, and in normal years that would have been a big number, but in the current environment and given what they've done elsewhere, it's relatively small," BIS Oxford Economics chief economist Sarah Hunter told The Business.

Included in that extra $10 billion, is $2 billion for state and territory roads, but Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has set the timer.

"If a state drags its feet, another state will get the money. We need works to start, not stall," he said while handing down the Budget.

Former New England MP Tony Windsor was quick to point out that not everything the Government announced in the budget was new.

He tweeted that the Bolivia Hill New England Highway, the first road project singled out by the Treasurer in his speech, was first funded under the Gillard government eight years ago.

Ms Hunter said working out what was genuinely new in the budget, versus funding that had been brought forward or previously announced, was not easy.

"But if the federal money frees up money that the states had already allocated and they're able to use it elsewhere to drive the recovery, then that can be positive," she added.

Smaller projects mean a quicker hit
The former Business Council of Australia president and now chairman of Infrastructure South Australia, Tony Shepherd, said there did not need to be a big, headline announcement like those of economic crises past.

"The problem with big infrastructure projects is they take two or three years from when you hit the go button to when you actually get people employed in the field," he told The Business.

"It's not as instant as the Government would be looking for."

Ms Hunter agrees.

"You also have to think about capacity constraints, particularly for some of the most specialist workers and the technical specialist equipment that's needed for some of these big projects, she said.

"There is a limit, to some extent, to how much you can do at any given point in time."

Social housing missing from the budget
The Government has been criticised by welfare groups and economists alike for not announcing more social infrastructure in the Budget.

Hundreds of thousands of people remain without a job and hundreds of thousands more are struggling on reduced JobKeeper payments, which are being phased out.

"There's was a real opportunity to make social infrastructure more of a centrepiece," said Committee for Economic Development of Australia chief executive Melinda Cilento.

"Social infrastructure, spending on health, on aged care, on early childcare — these are the things that really matter to the community."

Ms Cilento was disappointed the Government did not commit to building more social housing.

"More direct spending there I think would have delivered both against the objectives of getting the economy going, but also really helping to support those most in need in our community."

Ms Hunter agrees there is both a demand for, and economic benefit from, the construction of more social housing.

"Social housing was one of the areas where we thought there might be some additional direct spending," she said.

"It is a potential area if they were looking to do more down the track, in next year's budget or before then, that is a potential area where there is clearly a demand for that kind of infrastructure."

Construction already struggling
The Government is banking on tax incentives and $1.2 billion for 100,000 new apprenticeships and traineeships to bolster the construction industry.

It is a move Sydney electrician Ray Sherriff welcomes.

"Keep the young kids on, keep them coming through, because that's very important for our industry, we've got to keep those quality tradesmen."

Mr Shepherd also welcomed the emphasis in the Budget on young people.

"It's quite sad that we find ourselves in a situation where we have young people unemployed and we don't have enough skilled tradespeople," he lamented.

"That is an absolute travesty so it's great to see this renewed focus on apprenticeships."

Mr Sherriff was forced to lay off about a third of his staff when COVID-19 hit.

While he will now be able to hire more junior workers, there might not be enough sustained demand to justify it.

"It's starting really to slow down now," Mr Sherriff said.

"It's difficult to get projects in the door. It's one or two a month we might see coming across to price now, whereas before it was every week we were putting them through."

Construction has been lagging for years.

The latest figures from the Australian Industry Group's Performance of Construction Index show new engineering orders are at the staggeringly low level of 38.6 points.

Anything less than 50 means that work is shrinking, the further below, the steeper the decline.

The index has now been below 50 almost every month since 2018.

The pandemic has made matters worse for builders such as Badge Construction.

"In the construction sector in Australia, since March to August, we've already lost 70,000 jobs," said the company's chief executive, Roger Zammit.

"That's while most builders in Australia still had a reasonable pipeline of work in the field being constructed."

He fears the worst is yet to come.

"What's being reported is that there'll be a contraction of about 17 per cent in the commercial building sector in 2020/21 and a further contraction of 6 per cent in 2021/22 — that's really significant," he said.

It begs the question, will Australia be able to build itself out of recession? ... d=msedgdhp

Australia should brace for a wave of business failures and growing mortgage stress, the RBA warns, as support measures fall away
* The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) expects a wave of business failures is on the way for Australia.
* In its Financial Stability Report, the central bank said 10% to 15% of small businesses in hard-hit sectors will likely fail in the coming months.
* It also warned of rising mortgage and investment loan stress as the government and banks wind back key support measures.

Australia's central bank expects the number of small business failures will "rise substantially" as income and loan pressure builds.

With income support measures and more than $200 billion in loan deferrals set to expire, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) says between 10% and 15% of businesses in hard-hit sectors won't make it as they run out of cash.

"These businesses are in a tenuous position and are particularly vulnerable to a further deterioration in trading conditions or the removal of support measures," the RBA wrote in its Financial Stability Review published on Friday.

"Survey evidence indicates that about one-quarter of small businesses currently receiving income support would close if the support measures were removed now, before an improvement in trading conditions."

While the RBA acknowledged there was "a high degree of uncertainty about the magnitude and timing" of those failures, the prognosis doesn't look good.


For one, the number of business insolvencies has been suppressed since March as the government allowed owners to continue operating despite mounting debts.

hile helpful at the time, various groups have warned that all that may do is create a business blowout further down the line, that will have even larger ramifications as owners scramble to settle with their creditors.

So too will $200 billion in loan deferrals need to be dealt with by January. It's telling that even with that option, the RBA notes that commercial vacancies are rising and especially for retail businesses.

"Retail vacancies rose sharply over the first half of 2020. The biggest increase has been in central business districts (CBDs), where vacancy rates have risen to over 10%," the RBA wrote.

"Further increases in vacancy rates are likely and department stores have accelerated planned closures."

All of this will have greater consequences for Australian workers, who face the growing prospect of being furloughed at the same time their own income support, in way of JobKeeper and JobSeeker, recedes.

"As at July 2020, around 30% of Australia's working-age population was receiving JobKeeper, JobSeeker or equivalent payments," the RBA wrote.

"Despite unprecedented income support, some households have experienced significant falls in income due to job losses, lower wages or reduced working hours. Others face heightened income uncertainty and job insecurity."

While younger workers have been the most affected, it is homeowners and property investors who perhaps have the most to lose.

It estimates further price falls of 10% would see the proportion of Australians in negative equity -- owing the bank more than the new value of their home -- double. A 20% fall would see that percentage rise by a factor of seven.

"Extended periods of vacancies could lead to mortgaged investors struggling to afford repayments, and deciding to sell their properties. This has the potential to exacerbate housing price falls, particularly in areas with more investor properties," the RBA wrote.

However, it is some small business owners who may find themselves doubly exposed.

"A sizeable portion of small-to-medium-sized business loans are also secured by residential property and so difficulties experienced by these businesses could also lead to more forced sales and downward pressure on housing prices," the RBA wrote.

Not an enviable position to be in as Australia hurtles headlong into a recession ( UM GLOBAL DEPRESSION , YES I'LL USE THE NASTY D WORD EVEN IF THE POLITICIANS AND BANKERS WONT ).. ... d=msedgdhp

Web of hate: how COVID fuels QAnon and other right-wing extremists in Australia
When Donald Trump told US-based white supremacist group the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by”, right-wing extremists in Australia were listening.

Groups such as Reclaim Australia and The Lads Society — which are strongly influenced by Trumpist rhetoric — have always been monitored by security agencies, but the scope of their influence has been unclear.

Today’s launch of a landmark study, Mapping Networks and Narratives of Online Right-Wing Extremists in New South Wales, changes that.

Published by Macquarie and Victoria Universities, the report uses data from social media platforms to delineate a network of online communities which radicalise individuals and introduce extreme rhetoric into Australian politics.

On unregulated platforms such as Gab, Reddit, 4chan and 8chan/kun, along with the poorly-moderated Twitter and Facebook, there is a plethora of messages advocating violence, the report found. However, the actual threat of violence was difficult to distinguish from ironic and exaggerated posts.

After Christchurch: the culture that created evil remains hiding in plain sight
Read more >
“We know that individuals with violent intentions exist on these platforms. However, this environment is full of bragging, irony, and fantasy, meaning identification of violent threats is difficult,” the report says.

Right-wing extremists are defined by the researchers as communities and individuals committed to an extreme social, political, or ideological position that is pro-white identity and actively suspicious of non-white others.

In these social media echo chambers, anti-Semitic and anti-Islamic messaging and far-right conspiracy theories such as QAnon are used to recruit and engage users.

QAnon was the major influence on the Christchurch terrorist who live-streamed the fatal shooting of 51 worshippers at two mosques in 2019.

The dangers of these narratives are that, as well as fostering violent extremism, they serve to “polarise political debate and undermine trust in institutions and democracy,” say study authors Dr Julian Droogan, Dr Brian Ballsun-Stanton and Lise Waldek.

COVID-19, of course, has made everything much worse. Right-wing extremists have been exploiting the fear about the virus by promoting conspiracy theories and misinformation.

“Conspiracy theories regularly play a critical role in the development of extremism through the formation of crisis narratives. These narratives offer individuals a framework to identify an enemy that can be held accountable and that requires decisive actions against so as to protect the believers from destruction,” the report says.

For instance, people who are nervous about using vaccines are told that pharmaceutical companies are in the pocket of politicians and are therefore part of a powerful cabal, Droogan says. Believing this gives people a sense of agency in a time of crisis and an explanation for acts such as refusing a vaccine.

In 1996, One Nation’s Pauline Hanson referred to Australia being “swamped by Asians”. According to the Macquarie University report, racist rhetoric in this country transitioned from a mainly anti-Asian discourse to an anti-Islamic one in the early 2000s. This was triggered by 9/11, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the rise of Islamic State, and the 2014 Martin Place siege.

With less than four weeks left until the US election, the extremist language on these social media platforms will only get worse. Recently, Donald Trump tweeted a conspiracy theory about ballot fraud, fuelling fears he will refuse to stand down if he loses.

“THE MEDIA IS CORRUPT, JUST LIKE OUR DEMOCRAT-RUN BALLOT SYSTEM IS CORRUPT. Look what’s happening with Fake, Missing and Fraudulent Ballots all over the Country??? VOTE” he tweeted. His supporters are preparing to vote, but the Proud Boys heard something extra. They are standing back and standing by, with arms.

The post Web of hate: how COVID fuels QAnon and other right-wing extremists in Australia appeared first on Crikey. ... d=msedgdhp

US-inspired rightwing extremism an 'insidious' threat to Australia, study finds
Rightwing extremism poses a “creeping threat” to liberal democracy in Australia, according to a new study that investigates how extremists are using online networks to spread radical narratives.
The study – which focuses mainly on New South Wales because it was funded by the state government – identified networks involving mostly male and under-35 users who were attracted to “the theme of white identity under threat”.

It noted the influence of American populist politics – including Trumpism – in rightwing extremist discussions in Australia.

Researchers from Macquarie and Victoria universities said rightwing extremists were “very good at appropriating the language of conservative political opinion” and called on Australian politicians to ensure “our system of politics is protected from these very insidious and ongoing threats”.

Related: Asio reveals up to 40% of its counter-terrorism cases involve far-right violent extremism

The research examined 30 Australian rightwing extremist group pages on Facebook and 37,422 tweets from 3,321 users identified as being in NSW on Twitter.

It also examined archived message boards focused on NSW and Australian issues on Reddit, 4chan and 8chan, and looked at thousands of interactions on the platform Gab.

The report, published on Friday, said while most rightwing extremist groups that had formed over the past decade had done so in Victoria, many had “chapters” or associated groups in NSW and maintained an online presence.

The communities in NSW consisted of “networks of socially connected individuals that engage and share content across diverse media platforms”.

“We identified a trend towards mostly male and young (under 35) users. This is not to say that these communities are completely homogeneous, but that other demographics appear to be in a minority when compared to young males,” the report said.

The narrative of “white identity under threat” – shared throughout Australia, North America and Europe – provided a “transnational focus and identity for otherwise complex, diverse, and fluid communities”.

The networks also promoted narratives that sought to delegitimise liberal democratic government and dehumanise other groups, in particular Muslims, Asians, Jews, women and liberals.

Researcher Lise Waldek, from Macquarie University, said rightwing extremists were “appropriating conservative politics and appropriating Trumpism” to expose potential recruits to their narratives.

Fellow Macquarie researcher Julian Droogan said many of the discussions in Australia drew on imagery and themes from American politics.

“Trump is really held up as an example of a defender of white identity by many in this extreme subculture. However, we also see it being presented in a distinctly Australian way,” Droogan said.

Droogan said the perpetrator of the Christchurch massacre, the Australian Brenton Tarrant, was “celebrated in some of these online platforms, in particular platforms like 8chan and 4chan and Reddit”.

“Certainly we did see Australian characteristics such as the Akubra hat and the look of Crocodile Dundee and so on have been superimposed onto the Christchurch perpetrator’s image on some of these platforms, and that’s used to sort of sell an Australian stereotype within these communities.”

Related: How Victoria’s Covid lockdown protests are galvanising Australia's right

Researchers found differences in how extremist views were expressed, depending on the platform.

For example, they said users on Twitter found ways of referring to the “defence” of a “white identity under threat” without violating platform moderation policies.

On newer platforms such as Gab, however, this theme was “framed in far more explicit terms that consistently draw on antisemitism, Islamophobia and more”.

On the 4chan and 8chan messaging boards, the messages took on “a stronger extremity of expression including a willingness to explore and speculate about the need for (at times violent) action”.

Researchers also identified two risks that emerged from rightwing extremist networks in NSW and Australia more widely.

The first was the “shifting of the acceptable window of social and political discourse towards an extreme end point … that challenges the fundamentals of liberal democracy”.

The second risk was of individuals adopting violent and illegal tactics in an effort to trigger sudden social change.

Waldek said some people were attracted to conspiracy theories – such as QAnon - “because they are crisis narratives and they provide structure and security in times of crisis”.

“In our report we talk about the creeping threat and how that is the aim of rightwing extremism. When you look at its end state, yes, there’s a violent aspect, but they’re also trying to make it acceptable for people to talk about Islamophobic things,” Waldek said.

The researchers said politicians should take the lead in raising awareness of the threat from rightwing extremism.

“We spend a lot of energy within a democratic system, as we should, with the two different teams arguing and competing against one another,” Droogan said.

“But maybe we should also be spending some more time just protecting the rules of those games … so that our system of politics is protected from these very insidious and ongoing threats through rightwing extremism and others.”

The research was funded by the Countering Violent Extremism program of the NSW Department of Communities and Justice.

In the wake of the Christchurch massacre, the domestic spy agency ASIO has been blunt about the risk from far-right terrorism, labelling it an “enduring threat” that is “real and growing”.

Last month ASIO revealed rightwing violent extremism now constituted between 30% and 40% of the agency’s counter-terrorism caseload, an increase from 10% to 15% before 2016. ... d=msedgdhp

Experts explain why not everyone who tests positive for COVID-19 has to test negative to be classified as 'recovered'
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 27,000 people in Australia have tested positive for the virus.

Most of those will go through their isolation periods, many at home, before they're declared "recovered" by public health authorities and can return to the community.

But being cleared doesn't always mean returning a negative test. So how can they be sure they're definitely over their infection?

Here's what the experts say.

Do you have to test negative to be classified as recovered?
Not always — but this does depend on individual circumstances and where you are in Australia.

In Victoria for example, when someone tests positive, the Department of Health and Human Services says most people won't need to be tested again once they've been cleared by authorities.

However if you've been severely ill with persistent symptoms, hospitalised or are immunocompromised, it's likely you'd be advised to get a retest.

NSW Health says if confirmed cases wait out their isolation at home, they'll likely be cleared by a designated health practitioner if it's been at least 10 days since symptoms started, and at least 72 hours since you last had any fever or respiratory illness symptoms.

But if you've been in hospital or your symptoms haven't gone away after 14 days, other criteria may apply before you're released from isolation — that could include returning a negative test.

South Australia has the same criteria as NSW — symptom-free for 72 hours and 10 days since you first got sick otherwise more criteria might apply, determined by COVID-19 GP Assessment Team doctors tasked with all isolation clearances for positive cases.

Many states, including South Australia and Queensland, also have additional criteria for healthcare and aged care workers before they're released from isolation if they're a confirmed case.

No matter which state or territory you're in, if you're a positive or suspected case, you need to communicate with your relevant public health authority to make sure you meet all the criteria for leaving isolation.

Is it safe to return to the community without testing negative after isolation?
Epidemiologist Ivo Mueller from the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute says the two-week isolation period covers the vast majority of infectious periods.

Professor Mueller says if people haven't had any symptoms for 72 hours and it's been seven days or more since the first onset of symptoms, they're most likely past their infection.

"From a clinical point of view, those rules that are in place are based on the available evidence of when people are infectious," he says.

"In a sense, testing them would basically mean that almost all people would be negative by test."

Professor Mueller says the rules that are in place, based on that evidence, are sensible.

"I think they’re pretty safe rules, the way it's being done," he says.

"It doesn’t identify from an individual person that they are non-contagious, but based on the evidence we have, all the studies that we've done show that people are no longer infectious if they have no symptoms and it’s longer than 10 days."

But the director of the Menzies Health Institute's Infectious Diseases and Immunology Program, Nigel McMillan, says while most people will have recovered by the end of their isolation period, it would still be safer to test everyone to make sure.

"The gold standard is everyone needs a negative test before you’re let out, then you're done," he says.

"While I think the likelihood of someone who has had that 14 days is very small, of still being infectious, one in 20 people will still be that way if we’re talking 5 per cent."

So why isn't every positive case retested to confirm they've definitely recovered?
There's a variety of reasons for this, again depending on state, territory and personal circumstance.

Professor McMillan says a best-case scenario would be for health workers to travel around to where people are self-isolating and take their retests — but that has its challenges.

"There are certainly resource implications," he says.

"The reason you don't necessarily want them to go out and get tested, even though they’re going to wear a mask and the like, is that you’re essentially having them out in public in places where a whole lot of other people are going to get tested anyway. It may be more practical, but it's not as ideal.

"This is where the rubber hits the road in terms of resources, practicality and pragmatism. But ideally, (health workers) would go to someone's house and do it."

Professor Mueller also says physically collecting retests would be more of an issue than Australia's current testing capacity, which is pretty strong.

But ultimately, he says the current conditions to be released from isolation exist because most people will have recovered within that period.

"The vast, vast majority of people tested would be negative by the time they’re released from self-isolation, based on these definitions," he says.

"There could be some weird outliers, but these weird outliers that have been described don’t necessarily mean that somebody who is still PCR positive after that would actually be infectious.

"There may just be residual genetic material of the virus present, not live virus. The PCR test will not necessarily tell you that."

What if you're still sick after 14 days?
Sorry, you're not going anywhere.

In most jurisdictions rules are in place that you will only be released from self-isolation if it's been 72 hours since you were last symptomatic, even if it's been more than two weeks, so people who do experience longer infections aren't released while still contagious.

"What we do know is in people who keep coughing, there can be some virus in the mucus they cough up," Professor Mueller says.

"That’s why you can’t have any respiratory symptoms in the three days before (leaving isolation)."

Alternatively, some people can return a positive test based on residual virus when they have no symptoms and aren't infectious.

"The main problem with these cases is that it's not clear whether the virus you detect are actually alive and therefore transmittable, or whether you’re just detecting genetic material of the virus," Professor Mueller says.

"It’s possible that you can have people that could have some genetic material, some dead virus left that could be detected when they're tested.

"But the evidence really indicates that people are no longer infectious 10 days after the onset of symptoms, unless they’re having clear fever or respiratory symptoms."

Can you go and get another test after your isolation period anyway?
Yes, there's nothing stopping you from requesting another test even if you've been cleared to leave isolation.

Professor McMillan says people who have finished their isolation could seek another test for their own peace of mind.

"There’s clearly a payoff between those potentially 5 per cent who have got a very slow infection or are still infectious versus the 95 per cent of people who will be no longer infectious after that," he says.

"I still think the gold standard is testing, and then everyone who's have it and was positive, should test negative."

Don't forget, you need to stay home while you're awaiting any test results. ... d=msedgdhp

'Long COVID' could be worse health crisis than deaths
The long-term effects of coronavirus on survivors pose a more severe public health problem than the pandemic's excessive death toll, a British scientist has warned.

Tim Spector, professor of genetic epidemiology at King's College London, said information taken from four million patients through a smartphone app suggested that about one in 50 people infected with coronavirus still reported symptoms three months later.

The study said people suffering from "long COVID" experienced breathlessness, chronic fatigue, muscle aches and poor concentration, often long after initially contracting the illness.

Professor Spector said these symptoms were most notable among people of working age and affected women more often than men.

About 10 per cent of patients with COVID-19 symptoms experienced them for a month, and 1.5 per cent to 2 per cent still had them after three months.

Wordwide, that equates to millions of people living with a range of under-researched symptoms.
Professor Spector said COVID-19 commonly appears to develop like an autoimmune disease, attacking several aspects of the body's defences against infection.

The app data showed "a great many people" suffering coronavirus did not recover after two weeks and continued with health problems for months.
"This is the other side of COVID: The long-haulers that could turn out to be a bigger public health problem than excess deaths from COVID-19, which mainly affect the susceptible elderly," he wrote.

Professor Spector warned that while little attention was given to the vast majority of patients who were not hospitalised with the virus - up to 99 per cent of cases - early during the pandemic, many are now likely to be experiencing "long COVID".

The study is published by the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change. ... d=msedgdhp
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Fri Oct 09, 2020 6:24 pm








CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Tue Oct 13, 2020 2:45 am

Having a break from posting the "detailed" news for a few days , vegging out and catching up on zombies and movies instead.

Noting the very bad news coming out of Italy, UK, Israel, Spain, France, Germany, India, and USA regards 2nd waves of covid that are out of control starting to spread AGAIN.
Last few months of 2020 and early part of 2021 ARE GOING TO BE VERY TRAUMATIC AND BAD FOR MOST PEOPLE in most countries unless serious measures are imposed ( ala Vic, NZ ) to bring the local pandemic under control .
Unfortunately I don't see much evidence of many national leaderships having the balls to order LOCKDOWNS of similar scales as the one in Victoria for at least 6 months to bring covid19 under control and I expect bloodbaths in these countries as a result a ICUs are once again overwhelmed and more and more doctors and nurses and other front line workers are infected and die.

Seems the school break has had an effect on community spread in NSW and Vic, and we have have another bulk ore carriers full of infected Phillipinoes off Pt Hedland.

Looks like Vic wont be relaxing restrictions when everyone hoped , as the numbers are too high.

General data for last few days





CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
Posts: 12625
Joined: Tue May 12, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:57 pm

Latest VIC



17 OCT

Victoria records just ONE new coronavirus case - lowest in OVER 3 months
Victoria has recorded just one new case of the disease, just 24 hours before state leaders decide whether to ease lockdown.

No deaths were recorded on Saturday and Melbourne's rolling 14-day average is now down to 8.1.

The state had just two new infections on Friday with Premier Daniel Andrews expected to announce a raft of eased restrictions on Sunday.

'The fact that we as a community... city and country... have been as stubborn as this virus in our resolve to defeat it, we are well placed to take significant steps on Sunday,' he said on Friday.

'On Sunday, I very much look forward to giving people a sense of what the coming weeks will look like.' ... d=msedgdhp

Aboriginal community's quick response shielding elders from COVID-19 a marked contrast to FEDERAL "MANAGED/FUNDED" RESIDENTIAL aged care
In one of the bombshells of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, this month it found the Federal Government's efforts to prepare the sector for COVID-19 were "insufficient".

As of mid-October, 682 Australians had died of the virus in aged care settings since the beginning of the pandemic.

But for the people working at the Ballarat and District Aboriginal Co-op (BADAC), elders were the first people they thought of.

CEO Karen Heap said she immediately recognised the risk COVID-19 posed back in mid-March.

"So we, as an organisation, knowing that the vulnerability of our community would be high, we felt that we needed to act quickly," Ms Heap said.

"So we did."

Realising that the impending lockdown would limit in-person visits, BADAC staff started making calls.

"Staff members that were working from home had lists of community members, elders as well as others, to ring to see how they were.

"We also provided a service to do the shopping for them. We had workers that would go in and get the list off the elders, the money off the elders, and then go and do the shopping for them."

Home visits as much about interaction as assistance
BADAC home care provider Brian Meloury visits elders in the community and helps them with daily chores.

"Mopping, vacuuming, stuff that as you get older your back doesn't allow you to do," Mr Meloury said.

"Half the time it's not about going there and sweeping the floor or mopping, it's that interaction with another human.

"Just being able to talk to somebody and have an ear to listen."

Mr Meloury said a number of elders pre-emptively cancelled visits because of the virus.

"They were afraid," he said.

The panic-buying that plagued the first few weeks of the lockdown made life for BADAC's volunteers difficult too — it was difficult to cook meals when the supermarket shelves had been stripped.

"When people were panic-buying bulk mince, bulk toilet paper, having to go to five different supermarkets, definitely made it more challenging," Mr Meloury said.

'Why isn't anyone coming to visit me?'
Nikki Bell, 26 years old and a youth engagement worker at BADAC, said the social bond between elders and young Aboriginal people is a cherished cultural connection.

"My grandma's 97 and she's living in her own home," Ms Bell said.

"No one was allowed to go there [because of the pandemic].

"And I know that she was getting a bit confused, she was angry. [She said] 'Why isn't anyone coming to visit me?'

"And so we had to explain this [virus] is why we're not actually allowed to come in."

Ebony Sladdin also works with young people at BADAC and said she changed her own behaviour to protect the elders in her life.

"As a young person I wasn't really wanting to go and see my friends and do things with them, just in case they became infected with COVID," Ms Sladdin said.

"And then possibly running the risk to those [elderly] family members."

A bond 'broader community could take on board'
Ms Heap said reverence and respect for elders was a tenet that was pervasive across the plethora of Aboriginal cultures.

"Elders are teachers. They have taught us our history and culture, our laws, all the things that we need to know as Aboriginal people to survive in this country," she said.

"We've got to make sure that they stay well, to be able to pass that history down to our generation.

"Our older generations, no matter who they are, should be respected and looked after. It's an important thing that we do respect them and look after them because they've looked after us.

"The broader Australian community could look at that too and take that on board.

"I think it's important. They're a part of your life and they're part of your history, so you should nurture that." ... d=msedgdhp

Young boy rushed to hospital after contracting coronavirus
A little boy is in hospital in Victoria after falling ill with coronavirus as authorities scramble to figure out how he became infected.

The young child was taken to Melbourne's Royal Children's Hospital and is being treated as a 'mystery case'.

Victoria's chief health officer Brett Sutton said on Saturday authorities were yet to determine how he had contracted the virus.

'We haven't established the acquisition, so we'll go through that process, as well as finding out who might have been in contact in the 14 days before that child developed symptoms,' he said.

'There is no particular concern about childcare but clearly we're trying to look through all of those avenues around how that infection was acquired.'

Mr Sutton said genomic tracing would be used to help determine how the child was infected.

This followed just two new infections on Friday with the rolling 14-day average falling to 8.1 in Melbourne.

The average however, is still above the target needed for a widespread easing of restrictions.
Melburnians have spent more than 100 days under the state's strict lockdown with the city hoping to gain some freedom from Sunday with Premier Daniel Andrews to announce which restrictions will be lifted.

It is understood one of the rules eased would be increasing Melbourne's 5km limit up to 10km or 20km.

But Mr Andrews said the tough border between Melbourne and regional Victoria would remain.

The changes are expected to be more social rather than economic with pubs and bars to remain closed, with locals instead to be given bigger freedoms to met up with friends and family. ... d=msedgdhp

Daniel Andrews condemns Border Force delays after 17 New Zealanders allowed to fly to Melbourne

The Victorian premier, Daniel Andrews, has condemned failures that allowed a mystery group of 17 New Zealanders to fly into the state on Friday, criticising the Australian Border Force for delays in providing vital passenger information and writing to Scott Morrison to express his disappointment.
New Zealanders who travelled to Sydney through the newly formed international travel bubble were allowed to fly to Melbourne airport late Friday afternoon, despite the state expressly excluding itself from the bubble arrangement.

The group left the airport quickly after arriving and state authorities had no power to stop them. The location of the group is still unknown, though they are believed to be in metropolitan Melbourne.

Related: Coronavirus live news: 20 cases linked to Trump rally; hope in Victoria after just one new case recorded

Andrews said something “has gone wrong in this system, in that we are not supposed to be part of this arrangement”.

“There are many things the Victorian government can do and there are many things we’re ultimately accountable for but who gets to board domestic flights at Kingsford Smith airport in Sydney is not one of the things I am accountable for, responsible for or can have any impact on, only others can do that,” he said.

The premier had written to the prime minister expressing the state’s disappointment and publicly criticised the Australian Border Force for delays in providing the passenger cards for the New Zealanders.

Without those cards, Victoria had little information about their identity and status.

Alan Tudge, the acting federal immigration minister, labelled Andrews’s comments a “distraction”. He said the possibility of New Zealanders flying into Sydney and going elsewhere was raised in the Australian health protection principal committee, and Victoria raised no concern.

“The concept that people may be arriving into NSW and then potentially going on to other destinations was explicitly raised in the meeting,” Tudge said. “And no official from any jurisdiction raised any concerns.”

Andrews said the arrival posed little health risk, given New Zealand was Covid-free, and said there was no criticism of the New Zealanders’ actions.

But he criticised the absence of any warning, the decision to allow them to travel from Sydney, and the delay in obtaining their passenger records, saying “surely our systems are better than this”.

“No warning – in fact it is exactly the opposite of what we signed up for,” Andrews said. “It has happened now, it can’t be undone.”

Andrews said there should have been a process when they arrived in Sydney to tell the New Zealanders that Victoria and Melbourne was not part of the travel bubble.

“I want to be clear on this – I have written to the prime minister this morning and we’re disappointed this has happened given that I had written to the prime minister on this very issue the previous day, saying at some point we will join that New Zealand/Australia travel bubble but it is not appropriate now,” he said.

Andrews said the travel was possible because Victoria did not close the border, something the federal government had insisted upon.

“That is what the prime minister wants,” he said. “We have done that and now we see 17 people turning up on our doorstep without any notice, without any structure and we still can’t get the cards from Australian Border Force as to who these people are and where they have gone.

Related: Fair way? Covid turned a Melbourne golf course into a public park and now no one wants to leave

“Hopefully we will get that very soon. I have written this morning to make it plain, there is more flights coming on Sunday from New Zealand and we don’t want a repeat of this.”

Andrews said he hoped to have the passenger cards from the ABF by the time he ended his press conference on Saturday morning.

“Some things have gone wrong here… we made it clear that we didn’t want to be part – could not be part of the bubble arrangements at this point,” he said.

The stoush between the federal government and Victoria comes as the state recorded only one new Covid-19 case in the past 24 hours.

Andrews said he did not want to close the border.

“It has remained open,” he said. “I want us to play our part and one case today and now active cases down under 150. We are playing our part in getting the borders across the country open. We don’t want anything to jeopardise that.” ... d=msedgdhp

New Zealand travellers who flew to Melbourne via Sydney still in Victoria, authorities say
he Federal Government says "there was an understanding" that travellers who arrive in New South Wales from New Zealand would be allowed into other states if their borders aren't closed, despite Daniel Andrews stating Victoria was not part of the new trans-Tasman travel bubble.

Mr Andrews said Victorian officials had "absolutely no power" to detain the 17 travellers from New Zealand who arrived in Melbourne via Sydney last night.

The passengers flew to Sydney on Friday, on day one of the new trans-Tasman travel bubble, then caught a connecting flight to Melbourne.

Passengers from New Zealand now do not need to quarantine upon arriving in New South Wales, but Mr Andrews said Victoria was not part of the bubble arrangements.

"Somehow, something has gone wrong at Sydney, I think, to allow people to travel on beyond the international flight," he said on Saturday.

The Premier said he had written to Prime Minister Scott Morrison to ensure more arrivals from New Zealand do not travel on to Victoria on Sunday.

"We're disappointed this has happened, given that I had written to the Prime Minister on this very issue the previous day, saying at some point we will join that New Zealand/Australia travel bubble but it is not appropriate now," he said.

In the letter, Mr Andrews reiterated that Victoria could not accept any foreign travellers until mid-November, after the hotel quarantine report is delivered.

"I urgently request your action to prohibit onward travel of passengers under the Safe Travel Zone Arrangements into Victoria," he said.

"This action would avoid the need for Victoria to close its borders — an intervention I have resisted throughout this pandemic."

However, the Federal Government has made a statement contradicting the claim that travellers from New Zealand should not be allowed to fly into Victoria.

Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge said when the trans-Tasman travel bubble was discussed at a Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) meeting on Monday, "no official from any jurisdiction raised concerns" about arrivals from New Zealand potentially travelling to other destinations.

"There was an understanding that when Kiwis arrived into Sydney, coming from a country which has zero community transmissions, that there'd be no need for quarantining," he said.

"And that once they had arrived into Sydney that they would be treated like any other person in New South Wales, any other Australian, any other visa holder, and therefore travel into those jurisdictions which enable people to travel into them — and that of course included Victoria."

In an earlier letter to the Prime Minister, Mr Andrews said while Victoria wanted to give further consideration to allowing arrivals from New Zealand, it was not possible until international flight arrivals recommenced.

Victoria has not accepted international arrivals since early July, but its domestic borders have remained open.

When asked whether Victoria should consider shutting its domestic borders, Mr Andrews said he did not want to do that.

"I know that the Prime Minister would be very disappointed if that happened," he said.

"That is what he is trying to avoid, and that is why I wrote to him this morning and made it clear that we need to get to the bottom of this, and have the requisite assurances that this won't happen again."

'They could be Victorians for all we know'
The Premier said the 17 travellers from New Zealand travelled to Melbourne at about 5:30pm on Friday.

"They didn't spend very long at the [Melbourne] airport. They left the airport within only minutes, really, of having arrived," Mr Andrews said.

"Our officers have absolutely no power to stop someone, to detain someone in those circumstances, particularly given they were coming from a very low-virus part of the world."

The Premier also said on Saturday morning that Victorian officials did not know who the travellers were or where they were going, because the Australian Border Force had not handed over the passenger arrival cards.

"Because we don't have the cards, I can't tell you whether they are New Zealand or Australian citizens," he said.

"They could be Victorians for all we know."

However shortly afterwards, Mr Tudge said the passenger cards had been handed over to Victoria.

Mr Andrews said it was also unknown whether the people who arrived knew about the restrictions in place in Victoria.

"We're not asserting or inferring that they have done anything wrong," he said.

"Something has gone wrong in this system, we are not supposed to be part of this [travel bubble] arrangement."

Victoria Police said they would visit the travellers on Saturday to perform welfare checks.

Police Deputy Commissioner Rick Nugent said the passengers were in Melbourne and not under any detention orders.

In a statement issued late last night, Victoria's Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) said its authorised officers did not have legal authority to detain travellers on arrival.

"Victoria has not agreed to a travel bubble arrangement with New Zealand and did not expect to receive international travellers as a result of NSW making that arrangement," DHHS said.

"The Victorian Government has made it clear to the Commonwealth that we expect NZ passengers who have not undertaken quarantine will not be permitted to board flights in Sydney bound for Melbourne." ... d=msedgdhp

18 OCT
Victoria records two new coronavirus cases and no deaths, Shepparton outbreak contained to three cases
The handling of the COVID-19 outbreak at Shepparton, in northern Victoria, has been a "model response", Victoria's Health Minister Martin Foley says.

With over 6,000 tests conducted, no new cases have been found on top of the three cases identified on Tuesday.

More than 400 people, comprising close contacts of those three cases and the close contacts of those contacts, were self-isolating.

He said testing was extremely important to give health officials "the early warnings" about how to respond to a cluster.

"This has been a model response," the minister said.

"The fact that we are able to keep numbers low means that we are able, through a testing regime, through a contact-tracing regime, to throw the blanket wider and more comprehensively as to mapping where this virus is," he said.

Victoria has recorded two new coronavirus cases and no further deaths, the state's health department says.

One is linked to a known outbreak, and the source of the other is still under investigation.

It is the fifth consecutive day the state has recorded single-digit coronavirus case increases, and the fourth consecutive day no deaths with COVID-19 have been reported.

Melbourne's 14-day rolling case average is now 7.5, down from 8.1 on Saturday.

Two cases with an unknown source, or "mystery" cases, have also fallen off Melbourne's two-week total overnight, bringing it to 15.

No new mystery cases have been confirmed in regional Victoria, and its rolling average remains at 0.5.

The two new infections were detected among 18,546 coronavirus tests processed overnight.

New case linked to Kilmore cluster
One new case, which was not included in Sunday's numbers, has been identified in a staff member at Kemps Bakery in Kilmore.

The employee worked between October 1 and 11, but was not considered infectious at that time.

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said the case was likely connected to a cluster at the Oddfellows Cafe in Kilmore, which is linked to the Chadstone Shopping Centre cluster.

"I think we were pretty confident that we looked extremely hard for anyone who had had contact with that café [Oddfellows] and all of those who tested positive in Kilmore," he said.

"Yes, it's surprising [to find a new case there]. Again we need to keep prompting people to test more broadly."

Kemps Bakeries in both Kilmore and Wandong will be closed for cleaning and locals are advised to get tested if they have any symptoms, the health department said.

Figures released on Saturday by the Department of Health and Human Services indicate there were four active cases in the Kilmore cluster.

There are now 12 Victorians with coronavirus in hospital, and none of those patients are in intensive care.

Premier Daniel Andrews said regional Victorians could be proud of keeping coronavirus case numbers at a low level.

"We have opened up substantially and we have kept the numbers low and that should be a point of pride for every regional Victorian," Mr Andrews said.

"If you look at Kilmore, you look at Shepparton, the numbers of people who have come out and queued — some for hours — to get tested as part of our public health response… it is a deeply, deeply impressive thing and I thank them sincerely."

Extension of 5km radius among eased restrictions in Melbourne
Melburnians will be allowed to travel up to 25 kilometres from their homes for exercise and socialising when an easing of coronavirus restrictions kicks in at midnight.

Premier Daniel Andrews has also announced that the two-hour time limit outdoors will be scrapped, and outdoor sports like tennis and golf will be allowed to resume.

People in Melbourne have been in lockdown for more than 100 days, since stage three restrictions were re-imposed on July 7.

Residents in 10 suburbs that were declared "hot spots" in late June have been under stay-at-home orders even longer.

However some doctors raised concerns about whether Victoria's contact tracing system and infection control procedures were up to scratch ahead of the restrictions announcement.

Julian Rait, the Victorian president of the Australian Medical Association, said in a letter to members that "living with the virus will require much better contact tracing".

"We are cautiously optimistic Victoria's new system will be stronger eventually, but is it there yet?" he wrote. ... d=msedgdhp

Just two new COVID-19 cases as Victoria awaits eased restrictions
Victoria recorded two new cases of coronavirus and no news deaths on Sunday, as the state waits with baited breath for the state government's announcement around eased restrictions.

Melbourne's rolling 14-day average of case numbers has dropped to 7.5, a reduction of 0.6 from Saturday. Regional Victoria's two-week case average remains at 0.5.

The current tally for mystery cases recorded between October 2 and October 5 is 15.

Melburnians could have their five-kilometre movement limit scrapped on Sunday, in favour of being able to travel within a 20km radius from home.

Deputy Chief Health Officer Allen Cheng said on Friday that health authorities were running models on whether changes to the 5km rule would be viable.

"We're looking at everything at the moment," he said.

"There's models being run as we speak and they should be off the computer in the next day or so. It does take a little bit of time to do. We're considering all sorts of things in making those decisions." ... d=msedgdhp

Victoria Covid hotspots: list of Melbourne and regional case locations
List of case locations in Victoria
If you were at the following venue(s) on these dates, you are a potential close contact and should come forward for testing and self-isolate for 14 days even if you do not have any symptoms or your test returns negative.

Oddfellows Cafe, 36 Sydney Street, Kilmore: 30 September to 3 October
Mooroopna Golf Club Members Bar, Mooroonpna: Sunday 4 October, 11am to 2pm, and Sunday 11 October, 11am to 2pm
Central Tyre Service, Welsford Street, Shepparton: Wednesday 30 September to Tuesday 13 October
Bombshell Hairdressing, Fryers Street, Shepparton: Wednesday 7 October from 9.30am
Thai Orchid Restaurant, Nixon Street, Shepparton: Wednesday 7 October from 7pm
Shepparton Market Place Medical Centre, Midland Highway, Shepparton: Thursday 8 October from 9.15am to 10.15am
If you were at the following venues on these dates, you should watch for coronavirus symptoms and, if symptoms occur, immediately get tested and stay at home while you wait for your results.

Woolworths, 313 Victoria Street, Abbotsford: 26 September, 12 to 12.15pm and 28 September, 1pm to 1.15pm
Altona Beach foreshore and pier, Altona: 2 October, 1pm to 5pm
Woolworths, 551-557 Warrigal Road, Ashwood: 29 September
White Line Tyres, 73 Carrier Street, Benalla: 30 September, 12 to 3pm
Chadstone Shopping Centre, Chadstone: 23 September to 8 October
Coles, Westfield Southland, 1239 Nepean Highway, Cheltenham: 2 October, 4.45pm to 5.15pm
Priceline, Westfield Southland, 1239 Nepean Highway, Chelternham: 5 October, 12.50pm to 1.05pm
Dan Murphys, Doveton: 27 September, 12.30pm to 3pm
Chemist Warehouse, Forest Hill: 5 October, 11.30am to 11.50am
Aldi, Heidelberg West: 5 October, 5.15pm to 5.30pm
Leo’s Fine Food & Wine Supermarket, Glen Iris: 26 September, 12pm to 2.20pm
Galbally Reserve, 19 Arthur St, Hughesdale: 27 September
Caltex Kalkallo Service Centre, South Bound, 1340 Hume Freeway, Kalkallo, 30 September 2020, 7:00pm to 9:00pm.
Aldi, 466-468 Cheltenham Road, Keysborough: 1 October, 3.45pm to 4pm
Lilydale train, Lilydale: 23 September, 12.15pm
Hedgley Dene Gardens, Malvern East: 27 September, 10.30am to 11.30am
Coles, Victoria Avenue, Mitcham: 19 September, 3.15pm, and 23 September, 2pm
Flinders Street Train, Mitcham: 23 September, 2pm
Mooroopna Golf Club Pro Shop, Mooroonpa: Sunday 11 October, 11am to 2pm
Narambi Station Reserve, Mornington: 26 September, 1pm to 2pm
Waverley Gardens Shopping Centre, Mulgrave: 3 October, 11am to 11.30am
Chester Street Fruit Market, Shop 6&7, Oakleigh: 2 October, 10:30am to 10.45am
Coles, Hanover Street & Portman Street, Oakleigh: 2 October, to 10.25am
Coles, Victoria Gardens, Richmond: 29 September, 1pm to 2pm
Bunnings Warehouse, Shepparton: Wednesday 30 September: 5pm to 7pm
McDonalds Shepparton North, Shepparton: Saturday 3 October, 12pm to 2pm
Lemon Tree Café, Fryers Street, Shepparton: Wednesday 7 October to Monday 12 October
ANZ Bank, 261 Wyndham Street, Shepparton: Wednesday 7 October 2020 from 9:30am to 10:30am and Friday 9 October 2020 from 9:30am to 10:30am
Woolworths, Corner of High Street and Archer Street, Shepparton: Saturday 10 October from 7:45am to 8:45am
Coles, Springvale Shopping Centre, Springvale: 3 October 11.45am to 12.15pm
Caltex Kalkallo south bound, Kalkallo: Wednesday 30 September, 7pm to 9pm
Continental Mart, Springvale: 27 September, 12.30pm to 3pm
Woolworths, 302 Springvale Road, Springvale: 27 September, 12.30pm to 3pm
Coles, 29 Douglas Parade, Williamstown: 30 September, 12.17am to 12.20am.
Coles, Brandon Park Wheelers Hill, 27 September, 1.30pm to 2.30pm
Aldi, Brandon Park Wheelers Hill, 27 September, 2.40pm to 3pm
Strawberry Point Fruit and Vegetable Shop, Brandon Park Wheelers Hill: 27 September, 3.05pm to 3.20pm
Anyone on the following public transport routes is also considered a casual contact and should watch for symptoms. If symptoms occur, immediately get tested and stay at home while waiting for results, as above.

Yarra Trams No. 11 from stop 16 Brunswick St, Fitzroy to Stop 41 Corner Bruce St, Preston, 8 October, 6:10am–6:35am
PTV No.200 or 207 bus between Studley Park Rd, Kew and Brunswick St, Fitzroy, 8 October, 5:45am-6:10am
PTV No.200 or 207 bus between Studley Park Road, Kew and Victoria Park Railway Station, 7 October, 5:45am–6:10am
Train between Broadmeadows, North Melbourne and St Albans, on Sunbury-Craigiburn-Upfield Line, and 419 bus from St Albans station, 28-29 September, 1pm-3pm
Sunbury train, between Ginifer and Footscray stations: 4-6pm 22 September
419 bus, Sunbury, Craigiburn and Upfield Line, between Broadmeadows and North Melbourne: 28 September 1-3pm and 29 September 1-3pm
PTV No.200 or 207 Bus, Victoria Park Railway Station to Studley Park Rd Kew, 7 October, 4:50pm-5:15pm ... d=msedgdhp

Andrews eases Victoria's coronavirus restrictions on travel, outdoor gatherings, sport, hairdressers and auctions
Melbourne's travel radius has been expanded to 25 kilometres and people are able to leave their homes for as long as they like, under a relaxed set of coronavirus restrictions that kicked in from midnight.

Social and recreational restrictions have been eased in Melbourne, and regional Victoria has also seen some rules relaxed earlier than scheduled.

Another round of significant changes in Melbourne has also been scheduled for November 2, including lifting stay-at-home orders and allowing hospitality venues to seat patrons again.

The changes taking effect today include:

Scrapping the two-hour time limit for exercise and socialising
Allowing groups of up to 10 people, from two households, to gather in public outdoor areas
Reopening outdoor sports settings like tennis courts, golf courses and skateparks
Allowing outdoor swimming pools to host up to 30 swimmers
Allowing hairdressers to open
Allowing outdoor real estate auctions to go ahead, with up to 10 people, plus staff
Permitting non-essential outdoor home maintenance, with up to five workers
Resuming face-to-face consultations at many allied health services
There are no changes to the rules regarding masks, and people who can work from home must continue to do so.

November changes could be brought forward, Andrews says
The Premier outlined how more restrictions will be eased in Melbourne on November 2.

From that date, people in Melbourne will be allowed to leave their homes for any reason.

Visiting people at their homes will also be permitted, but with limits. Up to two people, plus dependents, can visit a household, but only once per day.

Retail will be allowed to reopen, and beauty and personal services can return.

For the first time in months, hospitality businesses will be allowed to seat patrons, including inside. Restaurants, cafes, bars and pubs will allowed to host one person for every 4 square metres. They will be limited to 10 people per indoor space, with a maximum of 20 people indoors.

Outdoors, they will be capped at one person per 2 square metres, up to a maximum of 50 patrons.

Groups will be capped at 10 people, seated 1.5 metres from other groups.

In bad news for football fans, home visitors will not be allowed in time for the AFL grand final this weekend.

"I know that many people would normally spend time with family and friends to celebrate that day, whether their team is in the grand final or not — it is a big part of who we are," Mr Andrews said.

"But your household and only the members of your household, that is how grand final day has to be. You cannot have friends over into your home. You cannot pretend that [the pandemic] is over because we all desperately want it to be."

The Premier did not make any announcements about the Melbourne Cup, but said the Racing Minister "would have more to say soon".

Opposition says interstate success shows Victorians are needlessly suffering
Victorian Opposition Leader Michael O'Brien said many businesses could not afford to keep their doors closed for another fortnight while the Premier "chases an unattainable target".

"Other states have proven that you can stay open with COVID and do it safely," he said.

"South Australia had more cases on Saturday than Victoria did, yet 24,000 people went to the footy on Friday night.

"New South Wales had more cases on Saturday than Victoria did, yet their pubs and their bars and their shops remained open.

"Daniel Andrews is pursuing an elimination strategy when we need to have a suppression strategy that lets us live safely with COVID."

Mr O'Brien wants all high school students to return to class before October 26, and he called for people to be allowed to have one other household over to watch next weekend's AFL grand final outdoors.

If case numbers remain low over the next week, and there is a "sense of certainty" in the circumstances surrounding those cases, the Premier said some of the changes scheduled for early November could happen ahead of time.

Health officials will be monitoring case data every day for the next week, he said.

"I ask Victorians to keep working very hard each day this week, so that we can stand up here next Sunday and make further announcements that what is slated for November 1 can be brought forward," he said.

Home visits and hospitality changes coming in regional Victoria
A number of restrictions in regional Victoria will also be eased ahead of schedule, with some changes taking effect today.

Up to two people plus dependents are allowed to visit people in their homes once per day.

The household bubble rule has been scrapped, meaning households can have visitors from as many other residences as they like, provided the limits on the number of visitors at one time are adhered to.

Hospitality venues can increase their capacity to 70 people outside and 40 people inside.

Indoor pools can open for a maximum of 20 swimmers who are 18 and under, and one-on-one hydrotherapy sessions are also permitted.

Libraries are allowed to reopen in regional Victoria, but with a maximum of 20 people.

The limit on the number of people who can attend outdoor religious gatherings has increased to 20.

Victorian Nationals leader Peter Walsh said he wanted to see a separate roadmap for regional Victoria that was not linked to case numbers in Melbourne.

"The fact that we can't go to the last step until there is 14 clear days of no cases in Melbourne, I think, is wrong," he said.

"The fact we can't go to COVID normal until there's 28 days with no cases again, I think penalises regional Victoria unduly."

Mr Walsh said it was unfair that religious gatherings faced stricter restrictions than pubs in regional Victoria.

"If religious gatherings have to actually go to the pub so they can have more people turn up to their services, there is something wrong with Daniel Andrews's rules."

Melburnians remain locked inside the city for some time
The "ring of steel" that separates metropolitan Melbourne from regional Victoria will remain in place for the foreseeable future.

Mr Andrews said the border would be strengthened, with more checkpoints and more cars being pulled over.

"Follow the rules and get the numbers in Melbourne as low as they are in regional Victoria. Then we will all be able to move freely around our state," he said.

Some small changes have also been scheduled from November 2 in regional Victoria.

Non-contact indoor physical recreation for under-18s, such as dance classes, will be allowed with a maximum of 20 people.

Non-contact indoor community sport for under-18s will also be allowed, but there will be a limit on spectator numbers.

Statement from the Premier:
There's been plenty said about how challenging 2020 has been.

And it's true. This year has asked more of us — taken more from us — than any year, ever.

But 2020 has also proven, without doubt, the incredible courage of Victorians.

We have found it in ourselves to stay the course. And as a state — millions strong — we are defeating this virus.

Other places around the world have not been so successful.

Back in August and at our peak, we reported 725 daily cases. At the same time, the UK recorded 891.

Today, as Victoria records two new cases, the UK hit 16,171. And as we continue easing our restrictions — they are being forced to increase theirs.

We are seeing states and cities, not so different from our own, overwhelmed by their second wave.

Doctors and nurses being asked to decide which of their patients are most worthy of their care.

And communities — entire countries — confronting the reality that this will be "normal" until there is a vaccine.

We have escaped that awful eventuality. With modest acts of greatness and kindness, we have endured this — together.

Today, and on the strength of that success, we've been able to progress a number of changes.

I know these changes can't be absolutely everything everyone wants. But they are the steps we can safely take that will make life a little bit easier.

From 11:59pm tonight, the five-kilometre limit for exercise and shopping will be extended to 25 kilometres. The two-hour time limit for exercise and socialising will also fall away.

Outdoor sports settings like tennis courts, golf courses and skateparks will be able to reopen.

All allied health professionals currently operating will be able to resume routine face-to-face care.

Outdoor real estate auctions will be able to take place with up to 10 people, plus the required staff.

And in good news for those sizing up the scissors or cautiously contemplating a buzzcut — hairdressers will be able to open, with strict safety protocols in place.

From tonight, groups of up to ten people from two households will also be able to gather in outdoor public places.

That could be for exercise — or a picnic in the park.

I know some people will reasonably ask why it's limited to two households — and not five or ten. But by limiting the number of households, we're limiting any potential spread of the virus.

We're also able to get thousands more Victorians back to work — particularly those who work outside. That includes tradies undertaking outdoor maintenance and repair work, mobile pet groomers and photographers.

These are the changes we can safely make from tonight.

We need to wait just a bit longer — until 11:59pm on 1 November — to take the rest of the Third Step that will see retail, hospitality and personal care services open again.

This is a timeline that is based on the current advice of our public health team.

But if we continue to track well on the most important indicators — case averages, mystery cases, test numbers and the number of days people wait before they get tested — we may be in a position to move sooner.

These indicators help tell us the story that sits behind a case — and understand how we can safely make our next moves.

My commitment to Melburnians: we'll review this data each and every day this week and when we get to next weekend, if we can move any earlier and do it safely, we will.

When we do reach the Third Step it will also mean we move from "stay home" to "stay safe" — with no restrictions on the reasons to leave home.

Under this step, all remaining retail will open. Restaurants, cafes and pubs will open. And personal and beauty services will be able to offer treatments to clients — as long as a face mask can be worn.

These businesses will be able to have staff onsite for a 'dark opening' from 28 October, giving them time to prepare to open their doors to the public.

We'll also be able to go a bit further on home visits too — allowing households to have two people and their dependents visit their home once per day.

The other aspects of our roadmap — from accommodation to outdoor sport — will also be introduced.

I know there'll be plenty of people who want to know when they can head to regional Victoria.

And unfortunately, for now, that's off the cards. As we've seen this week, this virus is wildly infectious — and we all need to help protect the hard-won gains of our regional communities.

Because we are doing so well in regional Victoria, we're able to make a few changes there too.

From tonight, regional libraries and toy libraries will be able to open to a maximum of 20 people indoors.

People will be able to hold outdoor religious gatherings with up to 20 people — and 50 from 1 November.

And in good news for our regional hospitality businesses, they'll be able to host up to 40 customers indoors and up to 70 outdoors from 11:59pm tonight.

Staying safe is more important than ever. So please, keep wearing a mask, keep maintaining your distance — and if you feel sick, get tested and stay home.

I understand that for some these changes won't be enough. They'll want more — and they'll want it sooner.

But the whole way through this, we have been guided by our public health experts and their advice.

None of us ever want to do this again.

We have come too far — sacrificed too much — to give up now. We are so close.

These are the safe, steady steps that will see us out of this — and see us through to the other side.

We can do this. ... d=msedgdhp

25km bubble REPLACES 5km bubble IN MELB as Premier reveals lockdown rules for Victoria
No limit on time outdoors, a new 25-kilometre travel bubble and outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people from two households are among the new lockdown rules for Victoria.

Premier Daniel Andrews said that from 11.59pm on Sunday there would not be any time limit on leaving the home and the five-kilometre limit on travel for Melburnians would expand to 25 kilometres.

Outdoor gatherings would be allowed with up to 10 people from two households and skate parks, golf and tennis would be permitted.

Hairdressers would also be allowed to reopen, subject to some restrictions.

Outdoor real estate auctions would be allowed with a maximum of 10 people and commercial real estate inspections can occur.

"I know some people will reasonably ask why it's limited to two households - and not five or 10. But by limiting the number of households, we're limiting any potential spread of the virus," he said.


All allied health professionals already operating would be able to resume face-to-face care.

Outdoor pools can host 30 swimmers. Indoor pools can open up for one-on-one hydrotherapy with a health professional.

However, Mr Andrews hammered home that Melburnians cannot have their usual AFL grand final parties.

The Premier warned that as "significant as the day is", people should not break the rules and host parties or barbecues on Saturday against the rules.

"You cannot have friends over into your home. You cannot pretend that it is over because we all desperately want it to be," he said.

"I know that many people would normally spend time with family and friends to celebrate that day ... it is a big part of who we are."

"As important as it is, in a cultural sense, in a very passionate way, for every single football fan across our state, it is not worth risking all that we have done, all that we have built, all that we can do in just a few days' time by having gatherings that are unsafe."

Next big step in fortnight
People in Melbourne will be able to visit other people's homes and retail and hospitality will reopen in part from November 2.

Mr Andrews said that from 11.59pm on November 1, including the new measure which will allow a maximum of two people plus dependent children able to visit another home once a day.

The four reasons to leave home' would also be removed from November 2.

"Not a bubble, not an exclusive arrangement, but essentially one family, two adults and children, to your home, once a day. No more often than that," Mr Andrews said.


A maximum of 20 people inside and 50 people outside, depending on space limits, will be allowed at cafes and restaurants from this date. Retail, beauty and personal services will also reopen.

From this date, contact sport for under 18 -year-olds and non-contact for adults will recommence. A maximum of 20 people will be allowed for outdoor religious gatherings.

A maximum of 10 people will be allowed at weddings. A maximum of 20 mourners at funerals.

Outdoor seated entertainment venues will be able to host a maximum of 50 people or 25 per cent of the venue's fixed seat capacity.

Mr Andrews said if the case numbers remain low over the new week, "further announcements that what is slated for the first of November can be brought forward".

"I hasten to add it will not be on (next) Sunday with immediate effect Sunday night. There will be a couple of days to make sure venues are, for example, COVID-safe," he said.

Further easing for Regional Victoria
Regional Victorians would also get some greater freedoms, he said.

Hospitality businesses outside Melbourne would be allowed to host up to 40 customers indoors and up to 70 people outdoors from 11.59pm on Sunday.


Regional libraries and toy libraries will be able to reopen for a maximum of 20 people indoors while outdoor religious gatherings would be allowed with a limit of 20 people. Religious gatherings of up to 50 people would be allowed in two weeks.

"Not so long ago we had 725 cases and there was simply no way we could have a debate, a perfectly legitimate debate about how to open, went to open, how to do that," Mr Andrews said.

"But Victorians, in every community, from every background, every circumstance, have stayed the course and we just have a little longer to go, just a little longer to go in order to see off the second wave, defeat the second wave, and then to find the normal and to begin the process of rebuilding."

The benchmarks for Victoria's next steps have changed, with case numbers no longer needing to be under an average of five per day over two weeks to move to the next step.

Premier Daniel Andrews said that "modelling gets very challenging" when case numbers get low.

He said the number of tests completed each day, the number of mystery cases and the ???story' that sits behind each new case will determine if the state can roll back more restrictions from November 2.

"As the numbers have gotten very low, you do have to make that difficult judgment, could this be as good as it is going to get? And then make a proportionate decision," he said.

Two new cases
Victoria recorded two new cases of coronavirus and no news deaths on Sunday.

Melbourne's rolling 14-day average of case numbers has dropped to 7.5, a reduction of 0.6 from Saturday. Regional Victoria's two-week case average remains at 0.5.

The current tally for mystery cases recorded between October 2 and October 5 is 15.

There is a new mystery case of COVID-19 in Melbourne's north-east.

The new case is connected to postcode 3081, which takes in Melbourne, Heidelberg West, Heidelberg Heights and Bellfield.

Another mystery case was revealed on Saturday in the 3128 postcode, within the Box Hill area. Metropolitan Melbourne has had 15 mystery cases - COVID-19 cases without a clear source - between October 2 to October 15.

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said this meant that there was "at least another unidentified individual" in the 3081 postcode, or even chains of transmission in the city's north-east.

"The interviews are indicating that people have not been to those high risk sites that are listed on the (Health Department) website," he said.

"It again points to the importance of wearing masks for all of those outdoor activities that you are involved in, whether it is food shopping or other essential business outside of your home, including meeting others with the new limits from midnight tonight."

Health Minister Greg Hunt said on Saturday that Victoria had met the public health benchmarks needed to open up to the same extent as NSW, and "hospitality, movement and family reunions among others" should be allowed.

Victoria recorded only one case on Saturday and no deaths. ... d=msedgdhp

Daniel Andrews slams the federal government after revealing 55 NZ travellers have arrived in Victoria
ictorian Premier Daniel Andrews has slammed the federal government's handling of the trans-Tasman travel bubble after revealing 55 passengers from New Zealand had unexpectedly arrived in the state, more than double the number initially reported.

Acting immigration minister Alan Tudge has blamed the Victorian government for failing to stop the travellers, who entered the state after arriving in Australia via NSW, despite Victoria not agreeing be part of the bubble at this stage.

Mr Andrews on Sunday said the number of travellers to cross into Victoria since the first trans-Tasman flight touched down in Sydney on Friday had risen from 17 to 55, as he lashed the federal government for failing to inform Victorian authorities prior to their arrivals.

"You know how yesterday I said there were 17? Turns out there is 55 that have turned up from New Zealand. So this is the gold standard, apparently, according to the federal government," he told reporters.

"To say that people were quite surprised that we found ourselves in this bubble despite the fact we had said we would not be, would be an understatement."

Mr Andrews said authorities were currently making contact with each of the travellers to ensure they are aware of the coronavirus restrictions in place across the state.

As part of this process, he said one of the people believed to have entered Victoria was actually in Byron Bay in northern NSW.

"We cannot just have people wandering into the place from another country. It is New Zealand today, but who knows what the next bubble is, who that is with," he said.

The one-way trans-Tasman bubble allows people to travel from New Zealand to NSW and the Northern Territory without undergoing a 14-day quarantine. Other Australian states are expected to sign up to the plan in the coming months.

Victoria's borders are not closed, meaning residents from the rest of Australia can travel freely to the state.

Western Australian health authorities also revealed on Sunday that 25 travellers from New Zealand were in hotel quarantine in Perth after arriving on Saturday via Sydney.

WA Police later revised the number to 23, saying in a statement it "will continue to ensure that all incoming travellers are assessed and where approved entry to WA are directed to appropriate quarantine arrangements and conditions".

Premier Mark McGowan said it was not an "ideal situation". "We would prefer better management of these arrangements if this is something that has happened that was outside of our control," he said on Sunday.

Mr Andrews' comments came after Mr Tudge said Victorian officials were present in Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) meetings earlier this week where it was discussed the travellers from New Zealand would be free to enter Victoria after arriving in NSW due to the lack of border restrictions.

He also alleged the Victorian government "expressly authorised" the people from New Zealand to be able to travel into Victoria.

"I would ask the Premier today to reveal those emails and any other correspondence which shows clearly and demonstrably that they authorised the people to come into Victoria," Mr Tudge told reporters in Canberra on Sunday morning.

"It is not surprising that they would give such authorisation because the risks are so low, given that the 14-day rolling average of coronavirus cases in New Zealand is precisely zero."

In response to Mr Tudge's comments, Mr Andrews urged the minister to stop "stubbornly defending" the incident and work with his government to ensure Victoria was not part of a bubble it "never agreed to be in".

Victoria's Chief Medical Officer Brett Sutton said he was at the AHPPC meeting where the trans-Tasman bubble was discussed, but was not present for that specific discussion.

"Whatever happened there, I can't change it. None of us can change that," Mr Andrews said.

"But I do not think it is unreasonable for us to be concerned if a whole bunch of people from another country turn up in Melbourne when we were of the view that we were not part of that arrangement." ... n-victoria
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
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Re: Life under social isolation or mandatory "stay home orde

Postby kingofnobbys » Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:21 pm

Sydney - coronavirus outbreak confirmed at childcare centre
Friday's only confirmed locally acquired case was a household contact of a person within the Lakemba GP cluster, which has grown to 16.

But NSW Health's Kerry Chant said a child and a staff member at Great Beginnings childcare centre at Oran Park had tested positive overnight and would be included in tomorrow's numbers.

NSW Health later upgraded health advice for the centre for all staff and all children who attended the centre after new cases of COVID-19 linked to the centre between October 2 and 13, inclusive, are now considered close contacts.

Previously only staff and children in a specific part of the centre were considered close contacts and are advised to get tested immediately and self-isolate for a full 14 days from when they last attended.

The two cases come after Tuesday's announcement that an infectious person visited the childcare centre on October 1, 2, 8, and 9.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the Government wanted to announce an easing of more social-distancing restrictions next week.

"They would depend on how the case numbers go in the next few days," she said.

But she affirmed that the 4-square-metre rule had been reduced by half for outdoor dining and events as of Friday, allowing people to mingle within 2 square metres.

"The key thing is to make sure that you are only allowed to go outdoors within 2 square metres if you have a QR code," Ms Berejiklian said.

She also said eased restrictions around outdoor music performances came into effect Friday, meaning up to 500 people can attend outdoor seated music performances, subject to social distancing.

Ms Berejiklian said she appreciated the change, which would increase patronage from the previous limit of 20 people, would come as a "huge relief" for the arts community.

"I know so many people who are performers have suffered for months and months, some have not worked for seven months, in fact," she said.

There were 16,391 coronavirus swabs collected to 8:00pm last night, up slightly from 15,802 on Wednesday. ... d=msedgdhp ... locations/

First flights from NZ arrive in Sydney
The first of three flights has touched down at Sydney Airport, carrying international passengers who, for the first time in seven months, will not need to quarantine upon arrival.

Just one case of coronavirus was recorded on Friday as a result of local transmission, while four others were recorded in mandatory hotel quarantine.

Friday marks the first time since March 29 that international travellers will not be subjected to the 14-day mandatory hotel quarantine scheme.

Two other flights from New Zealand are set to arrive in Sydney shortly, and provided passengers have been in their country of origin for the past two weeks, they will be free to enter the community.

Health Minister Brad Hazzard described it as a "great day", but pointed out New Zealanders arriving on Friday would need to prove they are symptom-free and satisfy other health requirements.

Mr Hazzard said passengers arriving from New Zealand would be kept separate from other arrivals in the airport, all of whom must go straight into a two-week hotel stint.

"There will be different channels and ways in of those New Zealand travellers from the other travellers, and also keeping them separate from people coming in from Victoria from the time being," he said.

There will be a total of 16 flights between the two countries each week, with Jetstar and Qantas joining Air New Zealand and Qatar Airways in advertising the trans-Tasman flights.

One man boarding the flight in Auckland told reporters he would be reuniting with his wife and child in Sydney after four months apart.

At Sydney Airport there were tears and hugs as loved ones reunited, with as many as 90 per cent of passengers on the Air New Zealand flight flying one way. ... d=msedgdhp

NSW records five new locally acquired coronavirus cases as Oran Park cluster expands
NSW has recorded seven new cases of COVID-19 in 24 hours, two of which are returned travellers in hotel quarantine.

The five locally acquired infections are all linked to known clusters or previous cases.

Three are from a family linked to the Greater Beginnings childcare centre in Oran Park, south-west Sydney, and one is an educator who works there.

The Oran Park cluster has now reached 18 cases.

The fifth locally acquired new case is a student who attends Oran Park High School where staff and students have been asked to self isolate.

NSW Health says contact tracing is underway at the school and the campus will be cleaned over the weekend.

This student is a close contact of a previous case linked to the Liverpool private clinic cluster, which now totals 11 cases.

The Oran Park cluster has triggered a number of alerts.

Anyone who went to the following venues is "potentially" a close contact, health authorities say, and should monitor for symptoms and get tested if they develop:

Gregory Hills Hotel, on the evening of Friday, October 9
United Cinema, Narellan, Saturday, October 10, 12:50pm to 3:00pm
One of Saturday's new cases also triggered a health warning for the Woolworths in Oran Park.

Anyone who visited the store on October 2 from 7.00pm to 7.30pm is considered a casual contact and must monitor for symptoms and get tested immediately if they develop.

There is also an alert for Shellharbour South Beach and Little Park on Sunday, October 11, 12:00pm to 4:00pm.

There were 14,378 people tested in NSW in the 24 hours to 8.00pm Friday.

Dr Stephen Corbett from NSW Health has continued to call for more testing over the weekend, reminding people there is no limits on how many times you can get tested.

"Everyone plays an important role in helping to contain the pandemic by getting tested quickly and following social distancing rules," Dr Corbett said.

"Get tested on the day you get symptoms, don't wait to see if they go away.

"Assume it's COVID-19 until it's proven otherwise by a test." ... d=msedgdhp ... d=msedgdhp

Staff and students at a Sydney high school are ordered to self-isolate
Staff and students at a Sydney high school have been ordered to self-isolate after a coronavirus outbreak.

A student at Oran Park High School in the south west of Sydney returned a positive test on Friday.

Only Year 7 and Year 8 students had been at the school, which will be deep cleaned over the weekend. NSW recorded five new coronavirus cases on Friday, including one of community transmission, as restrictions ease around open-air concerts and outdoor dining.

Four of the cases reported on Friday are returned overseas travellers in hotel quarantine, while one is linked to an existing cluster at Lakemba in Sydney's southwest.

NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant said a child and worker at the Great Beginnings childcare centre at Oran Park have also recently tested positive and would be included in Saturday's figures.

'I would ask anyone who is at that childcare centre to immediately isolate,' she said.

'A number of people would have been advised to isolate but we may be upgrading the advice for some of the casual contact at that childcare centre,

'Public health will be reaching out to you immediately.'

Dr Chant said anyone who attended the A2Z Medical Centre in Lakemba between September 25 and October 2 should get tested.

Anyone who was at the centre from October 3-10 should get tested, isolate and monitor symptoms, she added.

The new Lakemba case is a household contact of a previous case, taking the cluster to 16.

Up to 500 people are now allowed to attend open-air concerts, as long as they stay seated and remain four metres apart.

Restrictions for outdoor dining venues have also been relaxed, allowing one patron per two square metres, as long as venues use an electronic QR code to record patrons' contact details.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian flagged further easing of restrictions next week, depending on how case numbers go over the weekend. ... d=msedgdhp

Seven new virus cases recorded in NSW as Sydney cluster grows
New South Wales has recorded seven new cases of coronavirus in the last 24 hours, five of which have been locally acquired.
The remaining two cases are overseas travellers in hotel quarantine.

Three of the five locally acquired cases are family members who attended the Greater Beginnings Childcare Centre at Oran Park.

The fourth case is a teacher who works at the centre and all four cases are close contacts of a known case linked to the Oran Park cluster.

There are now 18 cases of coronavirus linked the the cluster.

The fifth locally acquired case is a student from Oran Park high school.

Contact tracing has begun and the school has been closed for deep cleaning.

Today's figures come after six cases of community transmission were recorded yesterday.

There have been almost 2.9 million tests conducted since the pandemic began. ... d=msedgdhp

Country pub closed for 'repeated' COVID-19 safety breaches
A northern New South Wales pub has been closed for a week and fined $10,000 after what police claimed were repeated COVID-19 safety breaches.

Police allegedly identified 12 breaches of public health orders during two visits to the Shaws Bay Hotel in Ballina on September 27 and October 4.
Breaches included a COVID safety marshal not enforcing the pub's safety plan, group bookings of more than 10 people, no physical distancing, people drinking while standing and patrons dancing.

The pub was issued two $5000 fines and referred to the Liquor and Gaming Commission. ... d=msedgdhp

Fears Sydney cluster could spread to NSW south coast
Health authorities fear a coronavirus cluster in Sydney's outskirts could spread to tourist towns on the NSW south coast as the state records five new infections.

Four overseas travellers in quarantine tested positive to COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm Saturday.

The one new locally acquired case is a close contact of cases linked to Great Beginnings Childcare Centre in Oran Park, in Sydney's south west, bringing the total number of cases in NSW to 4,149.

There are now six cases associated with the childcare centre, and 19 in total in the Oran Park community cluster. The centre has been closed since October 13 and will remain shut until October 28 and contact tracing and investigations continue.
Those who attended Great Beginnings Childcare Centre between 2- 13 October close contacts and have been urged to get tested immediately and self-isolate for a full 14 days from when they last attended.

Warnings have also been issued for two locations on the south coast, Shellharbour South Beach, south of Wollongong, and nearby Little Park, after they were visited by positive cases.

Anyone who attended these locations last Sunday, October 11, between 12 noon and 4pm is considered a casual contact and has been directed to monitor for symptoms and get tested immediately if any develop.

Alerts have also been placed on three businesses in south-west Sydney: Gregory Hills Hotel on Central Hills Drive, the 1500 United Cinema in the Narellan Town Centre and Woolworths in Oran Park.

Anyone who visited the hotel on the evening of Friday, October 9 or the cinema on Saturday, October 10 between 12.50 and 3pm is potentially a close contact and should monitor for symptoms and get tested if they develop.

Anyone who was at the Oran Park Woolworths at 351 Oran Park Drive last Monday, October 12, between 6.40 and 6.55pm is considered a casual contact.

Contact tracing is also underway on several bus routes in the region that were travelled by positive cases. They include:

Fellow travellers are advised to monitor for symptoms and get tested immediately if they develop. NSW Health will be contact close and casual contacts directly.

Across the state, 73 people are being treated for COVID-19, with one person in intensive care.

NSW Health have urged residents to remain vigilant and get tested if experiencing symptoms.

'Please get tested on the day that you get symptoms,' Dr Christine Selvey said at a press conference on Sunday.

'Don't wait to see if they go away. Assume it is COVID-19 until proven otherwise by a test. There is no limit on how many tests you can have.'

It comes as NSW recorded seven new cases of coronavirus on Saturday, including five local infections and two returned travellers.

Four of the locally acquired cases were linked to the Great Beginnings Childcare Centre, including one teacher and three family members.

The fifth case was a student from Oran Park High School, who is a close contact of a confirmed case linked to the Liverpool Private Clinic cluster which now numbers 11 cases. ... d=msedgdhp

NSW reports one local coronavirus case as south-west Sydney outbreak continues to grow
NSW has recorded just one new locally acquired case of COVID-19 — another infection linked to the Great Beginnings childcare centre in Oran Park, in Sydney's south-west.

There are now six cases associated with the centre.

The infections are connected to a known case linked to Oran Park cluster, which now has a total of 19 cases.

NSW Health said anyone who attended the Great Beginnings centre between October 2 to 13 needed to get tested immediately and self-isolate for 14 days.

The centre has been closed since October 13 and will stay closed until October 28, health authorities said.

On Saturday, NSW Health reported four new cases connected to Great Beginnings — three in a family who attend the centre and another in an educator.

Another case reported on Saturday was a student at Oran Park High School.

Staff and students have been told to self-isolate and the school is being cleaned.

Later on Saturday, authorities issued an alert for new venues visited by the cases from the Oran Park cluster.

The warning included the Gregory Hills Hotel, the United Cinema in Narellan, and the Woolworths at Oran Park.

People have been told to monitor for symptoms and get tested if they develop.

Four COVID-19 cases in the latest update were reported returned travellers in hotel quarantine.

There were 12,985 tests reported to 8:00pm last night, compared with 14,378 in the previous period.

NSW Health is currently treating 73 COVID-19 cases, with one patient in intensive care. ... d=msedgdhp

NSW Covid hotspots: list of Sydney and regional case locations
List of case locations in NSW
If you have visited the following locations then you are considered a close contact and must immediately get tested and isolate for 14 days since you were there, and stay isolated for the entire period, even if a negative test result is received.

Al-Jabr – A Different Class of Mathematics, Auburn: Thursday 8 October, 4.30pm to 8.45pm and Sunday 11 October, 10am to 4.30pm
Fitness First Carlingford Pilates Class, Carlingford: Saturday 3 October, 8.15am to 9.15am
Gregory Hills Hotel, Central Hills Drive, Gregory Hills, on the evening of Friday 9 October
Ripples restaurant, Milsons Point: Saturday 3 October, 8pm to 10.30pm
Ingleburn Hotel, Ingleburn: Sunday 4 October, 3pm to 6pm in the bar room
A2Z Medical Clinic, Lakemba: Tuesday 29 September to Saturday 10 October
Ali Dine Inn and Take Away, Lakemba: Friday 9 October, 7.30pm to 8.30pm
1500 United Cinema, Narellan Town Centre, Narellan, on Saturday 10 October, 12.50pm- 3pm
Greater Beginnings Childcare Centre, Oran Park: Friday 2 October to Tuesday 13 October
ACE Tutoring, Parramatta: Saturday 10 October, 9.30am to 1.20pm
Anyone on the following public transport route(s) is also considered a close contact and must immediately isolate for 14 days and get tested for Covid-19, as above.

Bus replacement from Central at 11.48pm arriving Strathfield 12.15am on 5 October
NSW Health is assessing potential exposure to Covid-19 of people who attended several other venues. Anyone who attended the following venues is considered casual contacts and should immediately isolate and get tested if they develop the slightest symptoms of Covid-19, and remain in isolation until they get a negative result.

Artarmon Mazda service centre, Campbell Street, Artarmon: Friday 2 October, 7.30am to 9.30am
Bargo Hotel, Bargo: Saturday 26 September, 7pm to 9pm. Patrons or staff who were there for an hour or more during this time are considered close contacts and must get tested regardless of symptoms
Squeeze & Grind, 180 Argyle Street, Camden: Wednesday 7 October, 11.45am to 1.15pm
Fantastic Furniture, Campbelltown: Friday 9 October, 3.30pm to 5.20pm
Spotlight Plaza, Campbelltown, including the Spotlight store and Gloria Jean’s: Saturday 26 September, 11am to 1pm
Big W, Carnes Hill: Sunday 4 October, 3pm to 4.30pm
Castle Towers Shopping Centre, Castle Hill: Monday 5 October, 12pm to 1pm
Surf Dive ‘n’ Ski, Castle Towers Shopping Centre, Castle Hill: Monday 5 October, 12pm to 5pm
Bunnings, Crossroads, Casula: Wednesday 7 October, 2pm to 3pm
Costco, Casula: Friday 9 October, 3pm to 3.30pm
Aldi, Eastwood: Tuesday 6 October, 11am to 12pm
S-mart, Eastwood: Monday 5 October, 7.30pm to 7.45pm
Aldi, Edmondson Park: Sunday 4 October, 6.30pm to 7pm
Chemist Warehouse, corner of Bridge and Rawson Streets, Epping: Tuesday 6 October, 10.30am to 11am
Bunnings, Gregory Hills: Tuesday 6 October, 7pm to 8pm
Penrith Homemaker Centre, Jamisontown: Sunday 4 October, 11am to 1pm
Lakemba Radiology, Lakemba: Thursday 1 October, 12pm to 2.30pm
Isra Medical practice, Lakemba: Monday 5 October, 6pm to 6am Tuesday 6 October
Aldi Emerald Hills, Leppington: Friday 2 October, 5.30pm to 6.15pm
McDonalds Emerald Hills, Leppington: Friday 2 October, 5pm to 5.15pm
Westfield Mount Druitt, Mount Druitt: Monday 12 October, 11.30am to 1pm
Narellan Town Centre, Narellan: Thursday 7 October, 11:30pm to 1pm
Kmart, Narellan Town Centre, Narellan: Friday 2 October, 6pm to 7pm
Narellan Town Centre, Camden Valley Way, Narellan: Saturday 26 September, 3pm to 5pm, and Thursday 8 October, 12.30pm to 2pm
Macquarie University Sports and Aquatic Centre outdoor pool area, North Ryde: Wednesday 7 October, 5.30am to 10.30am
Woolworths, Oran Park: Wednesday 30 September, 5.30pm to 6.30pm, Thursday 8 October, 5.15pm to 6pm, Saturday 10 October, 6pm to 6.30pm, Monday 12 October, 6:40pm to 6:55pm
Palm Beach Fish & Chips, Palm Beach: Monday 5 October, 3.45pm to 4pm, Tuesday 6 October, 12pm to 12.15pm, Wednesday 7 October, 12pm to 12.30pm and 4.30pm to 5pm
Guzman y Gomez, Penrith: Sunday 4 October: 1.30pm to 2pm
Home Co, Penrith: Sunday 4 October, 2pm to 2.30pm
Westfield Parramatta: Monday 5 October, 9.30am to 11am
Monopole restaurant, Potts Point: Sunday 4 October, 6pm to 8pm
Prasadi Nepali Emerald Hills, Raby: Friday 2 October, 3.30pm to 4pm
Shellharbour South Beach and Little Park, Shellharbour, Sunday 11 October, 12pm-4pm
IKEA, Tempe: Wednesday 7 October, 1.30pm to 5.30pm
Anyone on the following public transport routes is also considered a casual contact and should immediately isolate and get tested if they develop the slightest symptoms of Covid-19.

Train from Parramatta at 7.13pm arriving Milsons Point 8.04pm on 3 October
Train from Parramatta at 2.41pm arriving Town Hall 3.31pm on 4 October
Train from Town Hall at 5.29pm arriving Kings Cross 5.50pm on 4 October
Train from Artarmon at 11.18pm arriving Central 11.48pm on 5 October
Train from Strathfield at 12.15am arriving Parramatta 12.45am on 5 October
Bus 550 from Epping Station, Beecroft Road, Stand D at 5.08pm to Smith Street after Phillip Street, Parramatta 5.41pm on 6 October
Train from Moss Vale 4.52am arriving Liverpool 7.09am on 6 October
Train from Eastwood 8.15pm arriving Parramatta 8.49pm on 6 October
Train from Parramatta 4.50pm arriving Eastwood 5.21pm on 6 October
Train from Liverpool 4.58pm arriving Moss Vale 5.12pm on 6 October
Train from Moss Vale 4.51am arriving Liverpool 7.08am on 7 October
Train from Campbelltown 1.31pm arriving Moss Vale 3.50pm on 7 October
Train from Eastwood at 8.14pm arriving Parramatta 8.49pm on 7 October
Train from Eastwood at 12.18pm arriving Kings Cross 1.07pm on 7 October
Train from Parramatta at 4.31pm arriving Central 5.02pm on 7 October
Train from Central at 6.05pm arriving Eastwood 6.36pm on 7 October
Train from Kings Cross at 9.35pm arriving Eastwood 10.34pm on 7 October
Train from Mount Druitt at 4pm arriving Auburn 5.15pm on 8 October
Train from Auburn at 8.45pm arriving Rooty Hill 9.30pm on 8 October
Train from Mount Druitt at 8.50am arriving Parramatta 9.30am on 10 October
Train from Parramatta at 1.00pm arriving Mount Druitt 1.40pm on 10 October
Train from Mount Druitt at 9.20am arriving Auburn 10.05am on 11 October
Train from Auburn at 4.55pm arriving Mount Druitt 5.35pm on 11 October
Bus 840 from Oran Park Drive (South Street Circuit) to Campbelltown Station, Wednesday 14 October, 9.40am to 10.10am
Bus 885 from Campbelltown Station to Bradbury, Wednesday 14 October, 10.15am to 10.45am
Bus 885 from Bradbury to Campbelltown Station, Wednesday 14 October, 2pm-2.30pm
Bus 840 from Campbelltown Station to Bradbury, Wednesday 14 October, 3pm-3.30pm
If you live in or have visited these local government areas in the past two weeks, get tested if you have any Covid-19 symptoms, even if mild, and self-isolate until you get your test result.

Liverpool LGA
There is an alert for passengers and crew on a Jetstar Flight JQ510 flight from Melbourne at 11am on 27 September to Sydney. However, NSW Health say there is no ongoing risk of infection to the general public, and the majority of passengers on the flight are already undertaking mandatory hotel quarantine. ... d=msedgdhp
CBDs: Cleopatra & Caesar born 28Jan19.
Puff (RIP 10Dec15),Rex (RIP 16Mar17),Toothless (RIP 26Nov17).Peppa (RIP 22Mar19).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : , Fluffy (F) rescued injured by lawnwacker 14Nov17, Gutzy (F) rescued 27Sep19 - RIP 3Aug20 (est 12 yo), Wriggles (F) - injured rescue, over 8 yrs old, RIP 2Feb16 old age. Lucky juvenile (M) - cat attack rescue (lost r-eye, broken r-lower jaw), fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.
kingofnobbys Sicko
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