By Ben Wilson
A survey by the Australian Institute found that 72 percent of respondents said that rapid Covid tests should be provided for free to everyone. This includes two thirds of those who vote for the Liberal and National parties.
This answer confirms what we already know. Australia is unhappy about how the Morrison government has dealt with the pandemic.
By acting late at the when the pandemic first broke out, taking away the early financial support for those not able to go to work at the beginning of 2021, messing up the vaccine rollout, and now, the shortage of testing kits and allowing them to be privately sold at up to $100 each, have not gone down well.
More damage has been created by Scott Morrison’s continuously handballing responsibility to the states and failing to put together a proper national plan. How can the spreads of infection be properly contained without this?
At the beginning, Australia was prepared to give Morrison as lot of scope. From then, trust has been whittled away.
Anyone living in Australia must have noticed that the arrival of the Omicron variant has increased the level of uncertainty and fear. Few now believe that the end is around the corner, and wonder how many more variants and at what cost in lives and health?
More than half of the respondents to the institute’s survey agreed that governments have failed to adequately plan to deal with the pandemic over the last two years.
“Rather than lecturing Australians about taking personal responsibility, these polling results are a wake-up call for the prime minister that many people feel let down by government,” said the Australia Institute’s deputy director Ebony Bennett.
She added, “Empty supermarket shelves and businesses empty of staff and customers show the reality is that there can be no healthy economy without healthy people.”
“Rather than lecturing Australians about taking personal responsibility, these polling results are a wake-up call for the prime minister that many people feel let down by government.”
It is clearer than ever; Australia needs a different approach. One that takes on board a multifaceted approach. Vaccines can only be part of the answer. Everyone must be guaranteed enough income to survive, medical and other essential workers must be properly looked after. More must be invested in our health services, so they can deal with the challenge. There must be sufficient testing teams able to be quickly mobilised to new breakouts of infection to stop their spread. More specialised medical facilities must be quickly constructed. Effort must be put into building community trust for working together.
Only an all-round approach will overcome this threat, which now looks like being around for years.