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A press release was shared online stating that ‘border controls’ or; better called ‘citizen’ run COVID-19 Checkpoints should be set up. They are not exactly official. The Government has not initiated them to occur as thisquality understands.
Our reports indicate that no Government newswire has notified the press that there would be any Checkpoints set up in Northland following a 56-year-old woman identified as a Community Case.
The Ministry of Health has not initiated any public notification that the nature of regions going into lockdown is planned or set to happen over the Community Case emergence.
In a release to thisquality, the Ministry wrote: “There have been a number of calls over the past two days to Healthline from people wanting clarification between close and casual plus contact. A close contact is someone who’s more likely to be at higher risk of being infected because they spent time in close proximity to a confirmed case during the case’s infectious period.”
“A casual or casual plus contact is someone who has had only limited exposure to a confirmed case, usually by being in the same location of interest either at the same time or soon after a confirmed case.”
This means that the Ministry isolated the virus within fast contact tracing, preventing the virus from spreading further in the community.
Testing has given a good response that COVID-19 has not been detected in the Northland region any further. “Yesterday [January 25] more than 1,500 people were tested at community testing centres around the region,” the Ministry said.
“Frontline staff are working hard to ensure everyone who needs to be tested gets a test as soon as possible. If you have symptoms but have not been to a location of interest, stay home and call Healthline for advice. Nine community-based testing centres have been operating since Sunday [January 24] afternoon.”
Recently of the press release that was shared online, from Hone Harawira of Tai Tokeraus’ Border Control, it states there were discussions in place to deal with the latest Community Case because they happened to have a more contagious version, the South African Variant (not strain).
The initial idea was to set up Checkpoints in crucial areas across Northland to ‘protect’ the elderly people and everyone else from contracting the virus, yet it was not spreading and not getting out of control. The Government had the Community Case under control because they specifically used Bluetooth tracking and QR scanning at 31 different locations.
Northland was not needed to lockdown any further unless another case happened to be detected in the community elsewhere after further mass testing.
Reuben Taipari, TBCs’ Regional Co-coordinator, was ‘disappointed’ that the initial dealing with the Government in initiating plans for a greater restricted area lockdown did not go to exact plan.
“We’ve been in touch with the police, iwi and health authorities, and we intend standing up Checkpoints in key points across the north to protect our old people and everyone else in the north,” said Mr Taipari
“We’re disappointed that government has not already initiated plans to protect kaumātua and kuia in the north and Māori people in general, who comprise some of the most at-risk groups to the latest virulent strain.”
“This is not an academic exercise for us. Our tangihanga are under review, our kōhanga may be closing, govt depts are moving to protect their staff, iwi are initiating work-from-home strategies, and plans for Waitangi may have to be shelved, but the Government is doing nothing to protect our most vulnerable whānau.”
Since communications between Government and Police to set up official Checkpoints fell through, TBC Coordinators are rigorously planning to set up unofficial checkpoints still.
“[We] are yet to confirm dates, times, and shifts to set Checkpoints up at key locations, but we will keep police, iwi and health authorities informed and we look forward to their support to help keep our communities safe.”
The Government did not give any comment regarding the situation at the time of this publication.
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