Under tyrannical covid-19 restrictions, unvaccinated residents living in Australia’s Northern Territory (NT) have been prohibited from exercising or going to work. The new measure came as the state reported 256 new cases of coronavirus infections since January 6th.
Chief Minister Michael Gunner said that the new measures would run until January 10th, stating that the reasoning behind the restrictions was to combat the rise in cases.
“The fully vaccinated can continue as they were. For people who are not vaccinated, lockdown rules will apply to everyone aged 16 and above. Unlike previous lockdown rules, unvaccinated people will not be able to leave home to go to work or for exercise,” he added. Those partially vaccinated – people who only had their first shot of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine – are also subject to the restrictions.
Under the new mandate, unvaccinated NT residents cannot travel further than 30 kilometres from their residents. Although, the ban on the unvaccinated does not apply under three circumstances: Accessing medical treatment, purchasing essentials and providing care and support to a family member or vulnerable individual.
Additionally, Gunner implemented a lockout for excluded areas in the territory which should end by the 10th. Following this, it will then transition to a vaccine passport system once the lockout expires. Only the residents and essential workers will be allowed to enter the excluded communities with the NT, with those entering having to prove so with a negative test.
Chief Minister Gunner said: “COVID is often an exponential problem. One positive case in the community usually sees more than one person affected. There has been plenty of time for people to get vaccinated. People who are not vaccinated present the greatest risk of spreading the virus, and are the most at risk of becoming seriously ill if they get the virus.”
He defended his move to introduce a vaccine passport system during a press briefing, arguing that it was “not radical” to do so as other Australian states have already implemented the same measures.
“We’re doing this early as a sustainable measure that provides the best ability to control community transmission and who ends up in our hospitals,” Gunner said.
With the passports, citizens will need to prove that they are fully vaccinated via a certificate or app. It is mandatory to enter high-risk hospitality settings, which includes pubs, restaurants, cinemas and other large events or venues.
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