MY mother is in a nursing home and I have been notified twice this week of staff members testing positive to COVID. Hence, residents are isolated in their rooms, in the first instance until December 26. That's now been extended until December 29 after the second case. The two positive cases are unrelated.
I know that this is not the only nursing home involved. How can the health department even consider allowing elderly people who might be facing their last Christmas to be isolated in a room alone? They consider it appropriate for the rest of the population to be given their freedom, yet they are allowing triple vaccinated aged people to spend Christmas alone. What happens in a few days if other staff members test positive? Is their isolation extended again and again? You cannot continue to keep them locked up like prisoners.
The government opened up to allow businesses to prosper and allowed overseas visitors in, yet our most vulnerable who are probably the most highly vaccinated of the population cannot even see the people they love the most on Christmas Day.
Where has compassion gone in our society? You are not going to stop the virus now. These people accepted the vaccinations so they could live the rest of their life and now you are taking away the thing they treasure most; spending time with their family. Ask them what they want to do and I know what the answer will be.
STEPHEN Smyth, ("Hospitality bearing brunt of outbreak's cost", Letters, 18/12), I truly feel empathy for your plight.
It definitely appears to me that the Queen's Wharf Hotel has fallen victim to the now seemingly traditional philosophy of Newcastle venues being punished while trouble-making patrons get away with a slap on the wrist. Now that the dark days of the lockout laws are all but over, I would have thought that the days of having licensed premises suffer terrible financial blows (due to the actions of a very small percentage of irresponsible members of the public,) were also over, but I now think I was mistaken.
Hopefully soon enough, common sense will prevail, and those who defy isolation orders will face jail time, rather than having respectful patrons who are quite willing to do the right thing being the ones who have their right to a good time ruined.
Perhaps the threat of having to provide some sort of compensation for loss of revenue and wages may also make those who knowingly enter a venue with COVID change their completely and utterly stupid and selfish ways.
I WATCHED with interest when our Prime Minister was in Hobart on the weekend to launch Australia's new icebreaker.
My stomach turned as he stood proudly using the ship as his backdrop and stating how great this was for the economy and jobs. His government and the previous Liberal government have systematically and purposefully destroyed Australia's shipping industry, along with 5000 Australian seafarers jobs, by legislative changes which has seen our island country being serviced by ships employing cheap and exploited foreign seafarers.
Whether this is an ideological attack on hard working Australian workers because we have the nerve to expect that Australians have the right to work in their own country and expect our government to support that premise, or just a grubby attack on behalf of his big business mates in their relentless pursuit of more profit, or more likely both, I find it highly hypocritical that he thought that it was a great idea to use that ship as a photo opportunity when his purposeful actions have seen our seafarers thrown on the scrapheap.
An insightful letter from Michael Hinchey, ("Morals alone shouldn't decide", Letters, 17/12), demonstrating that public policy considerations in respect to laws relating to abortion and voluntary assisted dying are separate from any moral considerations.
His conclusion, which sums it up perfectly, is that even though public policy may trump moral reservations on both of these issues (and others where there is a moral dimension), related secular laws are not binding; it is up to the individual to decide whether to avail themselves of the protections provided by the laws or elect not to on the basis of their own Christian or moral beliefs.
Mike Sargent's assertion that in a democracy "the majority rules" (Letters, 17/12) is also a succinct summary of what it means to live in a social democracy such as ours. This raises an interesting question: if repeated public surveys show an overwhelming support for voluntary assisted dying, why are parliamentarians being allowed to vote according to their own beliefs?
If the majority of parliamentarians represent the majority of the people, the majority of the people favour voluntary assisted dying and there are no public policy reasons to override the people's wishes, why are parliamentarians not simply required to vote with the majority of their constituents' wishes - and enact the legislation?
NOTE to our elected politicians: I realise most of you are keen to have Newcastle recognised as a "global city". These cities are currently considering further lockdowns to stem a new wave of COVID while we are at the forefront of a new wave here in Newcastle. Thankfully, a music festival in the Foreshore Park was cancelled on Saturday - but only after nearly two weeks of disruption caused by its installation. Yet not a word from any of our elected politicians about Supercars. This is despite the eight weeks of disruption that will occur, impacting our already suffering local businesses. Just a reminder there are four department of housing residential complexes inside this circuit, housing many elderly people with multiple health problems. There are many unvaccinated children living inside the circuit. Even the fully vaccinated will require a booster by then. Requiring attendees to be double vaccinated at Bathurst did not keep the virus out. If still unconvinced, note that the publicity ScoMo got from Bathurst was far from favourable.
SINCE moving north, we still follow the local Newcastle footy teams, both league and soccer. We anxiously looked forward to the start of the A League and in particular the Jets, but we soon found out that there was only one broadcast channel showing one game per week at random. After watching the first broadcast of the Jets game we were very disappointed; poor quality (SD) and very poor commentary. The commentator rarely mentioned the Jets players, either didn't do his homework or could not pronounce some of the players' names. We need to support the local teams, how is that possible if we are unable to watch them in action? Unfortunately we haven't tried to tune in again. Most disappointing
I IMPLORE readers to spare a thought during these dark days for the staff manning the various COVID hubs and laboratories. Dealing with the public, who are naturally anxious in these times, must be no easy task. From all reports the staff manning these posts carry out their responsibilities with a smile and offer help when required. Let us all reciprocate with a smile and an Aussie "av a g'day 'n a nice c'rismus."
The tragedy in Tasmania should promote a reconsideration of the operation of inflatable play equipment. I would suggest a second inlet valve for water. It would be easy to fill to an appropriate level to provide resistance to high winds. Water provides the security for road barriers and would, I believe provide the same security for protection of our most precious children.
OVER 60 recent COVID cases from a Newcastle nightclub, at least 44 cases from a Sydney pub trivia night, as well as cases at a Double Bay hotel and a Sydney Harbour cruise, could only have occurred in vaccinated people, as unvaccinated were excluded from these venues. It is widely acknowledged, even by the pharmaceutical companies, that the vaccination does not prevent transmission or infection, but primarily reduces symptoms and lowers the death rate from COVID. I believe this disproves the narrative that it is unvaccinated people responsible for outbreaks, yet they are ostracised out of ignorance and needlessly denied employment.
WITH an election due next year it sure is a perfect opportunity for the Australian Labor Party to reinstate the labour first and foremost into its policy. Front line workers, like our police, paramedics, nurses, fire fighters along with several other essential workers deserve rewarding with improved conditions and decent pay increases. Not to mention employees being terminated by Zoom and email which, in my opinion, Is an absolute disgrace. Surely it would be a good platform to return to the "grass roots''.
DON'T blame the people who arranged for those finely-tuned Supercars for not having a regatta you pine for; blame the people associated with your much loved yachts for not doing so.
I, LIKE many others, am confused and concerned by recent changes to the NBN news presentation. Gone is reliable, relatable Paul Lobb ('Anchor axed from nightly news program', Herald 15/12). Now there are crosses to reporters standing in the next room, or outside of the building ,the point of which escapes me. Bring back Paul Lobb, let him do what he is so very good at, report the news and lose the attempts to " flash" big city news. It's not working.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.