All of northern New South Wales will be reinstated to the border bubble with Queensland now that stay-at-home orders have been lifted across the region.
Bourke Shire, City of Broken Hill, Kyogle, Lismore City, Richmond Valley, and the unincorporated Far West will return to the non-restricted border zone after being excluded because of local outbreaks.
They will be reinstated from 1am on Wednesday.
ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT
That means residents from those regions can once again cross into Queensland for more essential reasons.
Queensland residents can also travel to those regions again for the same essential reasons.
Meantime, Queensland’s Health Minister has again cast doubt on whether the state will reopen to the whole country once Queensland hits 80 per cent double vaccination.
Yvette D’ath told State Parliament the 80 per cent target won’t necessarily trigger the borders reopening.
“You cant simply just look at the percentage. You’ve got to look at the actual number of cases you have going through your community,” Ms D’ath said.
“You have to have the virus under control in your community otherwise you will see your systems being overwhelmed.
“We do not have that situation interstate yet, we see Victoria’s numbers are still very high, New South Wales numbers are still high and sadly the death rate continues to climb.”
Ms D’ath highlighted the situation in Singapore which reopened after hitting 80 per cent double dose, only to go back into lockdown five weeks later.
The state opposition has questioned whether Queensland’s hospital crisis is the real reason why the government is yet to provide a pathway to reopen.
“Let’s find a way to reunite families and help struggling small businesses. Right now Queenslanders are desperate to know this is serious, that the government believes in the ability to find a way out of this pandemic,” Opposition Leader David Crisafulli said.
“Because every day they turn on the television and they see a government that’s just peddling fear and there’s people who are stuck, Queenslanders who want to come home and all they get is a government that wants to choose fear.”