Monday, 24 August 2020

Continued restrictions will be a Government failure

“While Jacinda Ardern has been using the Ministry of Health’s contact tracing centre to film election ads, the Government has failed to stamp out a single outbreak of Covid-19,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“The Government set itself a three-day challenge on 11 August to test, trace and isolate the latest outbreak. Now we are nearing the end of a two-week lockdown and it appears the Government hasn’t managed to test, trace and isolate the outbreak.

“If the Auckland lockdown is extended further this afternoon, it will be a fundamental Government failure and another kick in the guts for businesses.

“The Government’s strategy of locking down the country while it fumbles at the border, and failing to test, trace and isolate adequately, is creating huge uncertainty for households and businesses.

“A recent survey of Auckland businesses suggests a third are getting ready to close permanently. 10 percent of bars and restaurants are set to close in the next fortnight.

“Businesses in Auckland can’t get exemptions for workers to travel a few kilometres across the city boundary, and even safe businesses can’t open their doors.

“It didn’t have to be like this, but there is a better way.

“ACT’s Wellbeing Approach would reduce costs and uncertainty and make the elimination strategy affordable.

ACT’s policy is:

• New Zealand Epidemic Response Unit: Based on Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Centre
• Government as referee, not player: Allow alternative facilities for safe, electronically-monitored isolation, with strict punishment for rule-breakers
• Risk-weighted: Treat different countries and travellers with different levels of caution
• Technology-driven: Such as COVID card, ëlarm, rapid tests, temperature checks and thermal cameras
• Continuous improvement: Constantly compare ourselves with the best and seek to strengthen our resistance.

“If we want to enhance New Zealanders’ overall wellbeing, we must get a lot smarter. If we take a broad-based approach, and remain aware of all aspects of wellbeing, then we will be truly better off in every sense. A Party Vote for ACT is a vote to tackle Covid-19 intelligently.”