Three in four support ‘Fortress Australia’

Three in four people believe Australia’s international borders should remain closed until at least the middle of next year.

But there is a growing push from within government ranks to open the borders sooner than planned in the federal budget.

A poll published in The Australian on Monday has found 73 per cent of voters think borders should stay closed until at least mid 2022.

Only one in five people believe the borders should open as soon as all Australians who want to be are vaccinated.

But a group of Liberal MPs including Jason Falinkski want the country to reopen as soon as possible.

They also want vaccinated Australians to be given a greater opportunity to travel overseas.

Mr Falinkski said it was understandable people had adopted a “fortress mentality” during the coronavirus pandemic.

“But it doesn’t need to be that way,” he told Seven.

“We spent a lot of money keeping families safe, we don’t want to keep them apart.”

Mr Falinski wants people who are vaccinated to be able to reunite with friends and family overseas.

He suggested vaccinated people could quarantine at home rather than in a hotel upon their return to Australia.

“Instead of playing to people’s worst fears we should be playing to people’s best hopes,” he said.

Former deputy chief medical officer Nick Coatsworth said Australians must be prepared for coronavirus to spread in the community when the international borders reopen.

“We need to have that conversation with the community now,” he said.

Dr Coatsworth said reaching zero cases of coronavirus in Australia was “perhaps unattainable”.

He suggested vaccination rates of 90 per cent may be needed to control coronavirus within the community.

Australia’s vaccination rollout has entered a new stage, with people aged over 50 able to get the AstraZeneca shot from their family doctor.

The vaccines will be available at more than 4000 general practices across the country, with some clinics to have their deliveries tripled to cope with the expected rise in demand.

Previously, people aged over 50 could only receive their jabs from vaccination hubs or respiratory clinics.

More than three million Australians have received their coronavirus vaccinations.

But 15 per cent of aged care residents have still not been vaccinated, despite the federal government previously claiming the priority rollout was almost done.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has urged more people aged over 70 to get the jab.

“That is a very high priority for us because if there were to be an outbreak in Australia, they are the Australians most at risk and that is where our focus is the most at the moment,” he said.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.