Annastacia Palaszczuk refuses to open Queensland’s international border until 90% are vaccinated despite health advice it would be safe FAR earlier – as she steps out at the races with new lover
- QLD premier to keep international borders closed until 90 per cent vaccinated
- Decision comes despite modelling showing it is safe to reopen at 80 per cent
- Health minister said modelling did not take into circumstances in Queensland
Annastacia Palaszczuk will keep Queensland’s borders closed until 90 per cent of the state is vaccinated despite modelling showing it is safe to reopen at 80 per cent.
The premier has refused to budge after Doherty Institute released modelling on Friday showing the state could lift its hard international border closure much sooner.
Some 67.14 per cent of residents have been fully vaccinated with the state expected to hit the 80 per cent milestone on December 15 – in time for Christmas celebrations.
The decision to reopen borders at the 90 per cent mark means that families will likely not be reunited with overseas loved ones until next year.
News of a prolonged separation may be upsetting for thousands of residents, but it did not appear to dampen Ms Palaszczuk’s spirits as she celebrated Melbourne Cup Day with her partner Reza Adib on November 2.
Annastacia Palaszczuk will keep Queensland’s borders closed until 90 per cent of the state is vaccinated despite modelling showing it is safe to reopen at 80 per cent
News of a prolonged separation may be upsetting for thousands of residents, but it did not appear to dampen Ms Palaszczuk’s spirits as she celebrated Melbourne Cup Day with her partner Reza Adib on November 2
The premier gushed over her new lover as the pair posed for photographs at Eagle Farm Racecourse in Brisbane.
Health Minister Yvette D’Ath defended the decision to keep borders closed saying the new modelling did not take into account different circumstances in each state.
‘It is very different in NSW and Victoria with such high cases and such high vaccination rates compared to where we are, that it is important to look at those individual states and their circumstances,’ she said.
‘We’re very comfortable with the plan that we’ve got and we’re sticking with that plan.’
Ms D’Ath acknowledged residents were frustrated by the delay and that she would ‘look at’ shorter hotel quarantine requirements when the state hit 80 per cent.
The state government has frequently based its decisions around the Covid-19 pandemic on modelling provided by Doherty Institute.
Throughout September and early October, Ms Palaszczuk put off revealing when the state borders would reopen to NSW and Victoria.
The premier claimed she was waiting for the latest modelling before she made the announcement.
The sluggish reopening to the state borders has been blamed on the slow uptake of vaccinations in Queensland.
Queensland has the third lowest number of fully-vaccinated residents with only 67.14 per cent double-jabbed.
The state trails far behind the ACT which has more than 95 per cent, NSW which is at 89.82 per cent and Victoria at 84.2 per cent.
Ms Palaszczuk previously defended the slow uptake saying the state did not have the same urgency as NSW or Victoria.
The premier gushed over her new lover as the pair posed for photographs at Eagle Farm Racecourse in Brisbane
‘In NSW and Victoria there has been a sense of urgency to get vaccinated because they had widespread Delta outbreaks, they had people in hospitals, people in their homes who’ve been very ill with Covid and that has been an incentive to get their lives back to some sort of normality,’ she said.
‘I’m asking Queenslanders to get vaccinated to keep our sense of lifestyle.’
Agriculture Minister David Littleproud was critical of the pace of the vaccine rollout.
‘The states that have done the least on vaccination are paying the price; we haven’t got Covid here but it will come when we get a case, it’ll sweep right across Queensland,’ he said.
‘The Premier has been asleep at the wheel, and her big idea to put jabs in arms was around Bunnings, and herself and her chief health officer destroyed the confidence of the vaccine some months ago when they demonised AstraZeneca – and in fact (they) themselves were (among) the last public officials to get the jab.’
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