Bath welcomes Victorian contact tracing inquiry

The Upper House of the Victorian Parliament has this week voted in favour of The Nationals and Liberals motion to establish a parliamentary inquiry into Victoria’s controversial contact tracing system.

The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Melina Bath said she welcomed the establishment of the Inquiry as Victorians really deserve to learn the truth, especially after so many livelihoods and businesses have been so severely impacted by the extended lockdown.

“It is important to get to the bottom of the persistent failures that have plagued Labor’s contract tracing which locked up Victorians in their homes and forcibly closed businesses,” said Ms Bath.

“The ongoing issues with contract tracing in Victoria have been well documented and discussed publicly, with example after example of where it was going wrong.

“This Inquiry will work to get to the bottom of the issues, identify the exact contact tracing system failures and expose any cover ups.”

State Parliament’s Legal and Social Issues Committee will be overseeing the Contact Tracing Parliamentary Inquiry, as a member of the Committee Ms Bath will undertake an active role in the Inquiry and its processes.

Speaking in State Parliament this week Ms Bath said there have been local examples of problems with contact tracing and communication with Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

“A constituent initially contacted by DHHS was identified as a contact and advised to be tested.  That constituent was never again contacted by DHHS, no text message or call to say the results were negative, no check-up to see how they or their household were faring despite the entire family being instructed to quarantine for 14 days. 

“After a week of waiting for results, the family followed up, accessing the tests results through their family GP.

“If Victoria’s contact tracing was world’s best practice as Daniel Andrews proclaims, cases such as this would not be happening.”

Ms Bath said Victorians will be living with coronavirus until a vaccine is available, so the priority is to identify and rectify all the problems with Victoria’s contact tracing system.

“Victorians must be given an assurance that Labor’s contact tracing mistakes will never again have the opportunity to be repeated.

“Each positive diagnosis’ of coronavirus must immediately have a wall built around it to halt it seeding into the wider community like it did from the failed hotel quarantine program,” Ms Bath said.

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