small business sport Education | October 08, 2021

Letter to the editor: The Nationals' alternative roadmap

Victorians are looking for an iron-clad guarantee we’re on the road to reopen, rebuild and recover.

Mixed messages and the Premier’s condescending lack of trust in Victorians has left us without hope that Labor’s roadmap will deliver us the freedoms it promises.

As double-dose vaccination rates reach 60 per cent in regional Victoria, we deserve to know 18 months of sacrifice won’t be for nothing.

The Nationals’ alternative roadmap delivers certainty and a positive way forward.

Under Labor’s roadmap, when regional LGAs do hit higher vaccination thresholds, we’ll still wait weeks to reopen due to lower rates in Melbourne. Currently, 51 per cent of Melburnians are fully vaccinated.

The Nationals’ alternative roadmap calls for regional Victoria to be unshackled from Melbourne, to allow us to move to the next phase as soon as we reach key milestones.

Common-sense changes, like rolling out rapid testing, will build confidence that we’re doing everything we can to keep protecting our health when we do reopen.

For regional hospitality, it should include an immediate return to density limits of one person per four square metres, not patron caps, for LGAs that aren’t in lockdown.

Our schools and childcare in regional areas that aren’t in lockdown should be able to fully reopen – immediately.

And at the 70-per-cent vaccination milestone, all country community sport should return for fully vaccinated Victorians, with an adequate number of players for competition.

What regional Victoria needs is a plan for recovery, not a fake lifting of restrictions that stops us building a post-COVID future.

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