Lockdown Is Now Definite

You have been repeatedly warned and it was always plainly obvious. Yes this is West Australia at the moment however it will be Australia wide very soon thanks to the ineptness of our politicians and senior civil servants. End of – be prepared and best of luck.

There is this as well

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-28/tasmania-introduces-new-coronavirus-response/12099368

WA authorities urge backpackers to ‘go home’ before coronavirus travel lockdown

A line of cars in the Surfers Point carpark in Margaret River.PHOTO: A glut of backpackers in Margaret River has led to some camping at Surfers Point carpark. (ABC South West WA: Anthony Pancia)

The head of a West Australian local council has urged backpackers to “go home” amid mounting tensions between travellers and regional communities.

Key points:

  • The WA Government is preparing to impose tough new regional travel restrictions from midnight on Tuesday
  • Augusta-Margaret River Shire president Ian Earl said the backpackers needed to go home
  • Busselton Mayor Grant Henley acknowledged some were legitimately stranded, and urged “compassion”

The call comes as the WA Government prepares to impose tough new regional travel restrictions from midnight on Tuesday, to try and curb the spread of COVID-19.

In Margaret River, in the WA’s South West, there are concerns that backpackers will pose a health risk to the community and drain health resources if they remain in the town after the end of the wine vintage next weekend.

Augusta-Margaret River Shire president Ian Earl said the backpackers needed to go home.

“They need to head to Perth and get on a plane and go home, because they could be better looked after in their own countries,” he said.

“It would be very difficult for us down here if they don’t go.”

Residents ‘afraid of backpackers’

Earlier this week it was revealed that more than 140,000 backpackers had chosen to stay in Australia and farmers had seen a rise in the number desperately looking for work.

Ian Earl outside Shire of Augusta-Margaret River office. PHOTO: Ian Earl says backpackers “could be better looked after in their own countries”. (ABC News: Eliza Laschon)

One Swiss traveller, who did not wish to be identified, told the ABC that he and his companions had been moved on from where they’d been camping at the beach.

“I think they (the residents) are afraid of backpackers, that we transfer the virus and they want to protect their local people, which I understand,” he said.

The man said he’d thought about returning home to Switzerland, but was worried he might get stuck in another country on the way.

An Italian traveller told the ABC she was afraid to return home because the situation in Italy was worse than in Australia.

A ranger's car stops in a carpark where lots of backpackers' vans are parked.PHOTO: Margaret River rangers have been performing sweeps and moving on backpackers from areas such as Surfers Point where camping is not allowed. (ABC South West WA: Anthony Pancia)

Mayor urges ‘compassion’

The nearby City of Busselton has also urged backpackers to go home, but Mayor Grant Henley acknowledged some were legitimately stranded.

Busselton Mayor Grant Henley wearing a white shirt and red tie smiles and poses for a cameraPHOTO: Grant Henley has asked tourism operators to open up vacant properties to accommodate stranded backpackers. (ABC South West: Laura Birch)

“While we do urge them to return home if possible, the reality is that for many this is just not possible now,” he said in a statement yesterday.

“The last thing we want is a community of backpackers sleeping rough across the district because we didn’t respond to their situation practically and with compassion — we’re better than that.”

Mr Henley has called on local tourism operators to open up vacant accommodation for those in need.

“This is what we hope communities across Australia and the world would do for our residents in a similar predicament,” he said.

New website promises to fill ag jobs

Yesterday, the State Government launched a new website — www.jobsinwafoodandag.com — linking job seekers with primary producers during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Agriculture Minister Alan MacTiernan told the Country Hour that anyone who secured employment through the service would be exempt from the regional travel restrictions.

“We’re just saying to people that rather than what’s happening at the moment, that we’ve got hundreds of backpackers rocking up into Manjimup and Margaret River looking for work, we want you to get your job first, and we’re facilitating that,” she said.

But it’s uncertain whether the website will address the glut of backpackers in towns like Margaret River, as it will also cater to the many regional West Australians who have found themselves out of work due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Alannah MacTiernan standing at a podium in front of an Australian flag.PHOTO: Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan says a new website will link regional job seekers with primary producers. (ABC News: Kathryn Diss)

Department of Primary Industries & Regional Development agribusiness development manager Jackie Jarvis said backpackers had been an “amazing resource” for agriculture, but that they should go home if they could.

“They’ve really kept ag going for the last 20 years, but times are really challenging at the moment,” she said.

“We need to be mindful that backpackers who might want to stay, they might be having issues with travel insurance, they might be having issues with getting home down the track.”

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-28/covid-19-backpackers-australia-told-to-go-home/12098426

Elect one clown and you will get the whole circus

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