I recently rose in this place to address the burden of lockdown restrictions on my community. Too many have lost livelihoods because of the restrictions on travel and authorised work. I've had constituents in tears because, as construction workers, they cannot work. Unable to attend a work site, either their contracts are being given to someone else or they face the likelihood of paying non-completion fines. Many of my community tell me they are still waiting for the promised monetary support, having applied several weeks ago. Friday's announcement that there would be a curfew for the LGAs of concern was another blow. This further entrenches a double standard that is creating a deep divide in Sydney. I am wholeheartedly supportive of governments doing their best to try to combat COVID-19. I support scientists, and I support the chief medical officers, but I don't understand the logic of a curfew in some areas and in not others. The restrictions in the Penrith LGA are a clear example: twelve suburbs are included while the rest of the LGA is not. There are no physical or geographical boundaries separating these arbitrary suburbs either, here or in other parts of Sydney. These boundaries are mere lines on a map. This virus is unaffected by political spin and doesn't respect borders. We need to fight this as a health issue, and, to do so, it needs to be one rule for all.
23 August 2021