Update 27 April
Sweet Relief – a ‘Sugar Hit’ for some states
We’ve been under the ‘Stay At Home’ banner long enough now that some are starting to turn the translucent colour of underground insects. Others missed going away on holiday and it’s taking its toll, and I would bet that head banging has been on the rise.
To the relief of many, this weekend offered a pick-me-up for a few states, allowing some return to the things they love. We’re warned we still have a long way to go, but ScoMo has confirmed we’re on the road out.
All states emphasised that social distancing, handwashing and the other daily precautions that have become second nature to us will be around until there is a vaccine. (When last did you pay for something by cash?)
Here are this week’s eased restrictions:
After another day of zero new cases, social gatherings can now increase to 10 people. That means children can have play dates and families can have barbeques again (as long as everyone is 1.5m apart.)
With THREE WEEKS of zero new cases, and all 5 NT cases recovered, some national parks are reopening. That means a return to camping, fishing, swimming and hiking.
Anastacia Palaszczuk probably wins this week on easing restrictions.Driving up to 50km from your house is now all good, some national parks will reopen and you can shop for nonessential items. That means picnics in the park again (still at a minimum of 2 people gathered), boating, jetskiing, and motorbike riding can kick back in, while those less inclined to the outdoors can indulge in retail therapy.
Nationwide, testing for COVID-19 is now offered to all those experiencing respiratory symptoms, with 40- to 50,000 tests being performed daily. Victoria has followed South Australia’s action of having a testing blitz, with the premier announcing Victoria’s target of 100,000 tests in the next fortnight.
Your Bluetooth Handshake – COVIDsafe app
App, app, app, app, appy, app, app.
This is probably NOT the first you’ve heard of the COVIDSafe app today. Launched last night, it reached 2 million downloads this evening. That’s looking good for the target of 40% uptake. According to Sky News, community polls have indicated that 50 – 62% of Greens, Labour and Coalition voters will download the app, and the male-female stats are similar. You’ll find more COVIDSafe details here: www.covidsafe.gov.au
(I got the App but then forgot to leave it running when I went to the shop today. Probably another thing that will become part of the new normal for me is trying to remember that.)
The Stats for Australia
- There have been 6,713 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Australia.
- Sadly, 83 have died
- 42 are in ICU
- 5,558 people have recovered
Hope Over Fear
Working from home …. with wildlife.
- How about hosting 100 spiders in your back room? Eamon normally cares for the venomous spiders at the Queensland Museum. When it closed due to restrictions, he was pleased to accept the nomination to work with them at home.
- Raquel looks after sloths at the Gamboa Sloth Sanctuary and Wildlife Rescue Centre, near Panama City (between the Americas). She’s emptied her guest room to fill it with branches, so that the sloths can move in. Arrangements have also been made to give them their very own swimming pool, as swimming is a favourite of theirs.
In sanctuaries where the animals can’t go home with their keepers, the biggest issue is keeping routines and contact with people. When Cyclone Yasi hit Townsville in 2010, Tonka the wombat at the Billabong Sanctuary stopped eating until visitors returned. Despite having no visitors at the moment because of the coronavirus restrictions, the koalas still demand their cuddles, the birds continue their flight shows, and pythons and crocs continue to be handled, just to keep things ‘normal’.
Your Tip for Today
Bank Support Hotline for businesses dealing with JobKeeper
Your business might have had trouble getting a loan, which was supposed to be much easier with the measures in place. Immediate support might be especially needed to make the first JobKeeper payments to your employees, before receiving your package from the government.
With a bit of chivvying by ScoMo, bank hotlines have now been set up to ensure your business can get the help you need with Jobkeeper:
ANZ: 1800 571 123
NAB: 1800 JOB KEEPER (1800 562 533)
CBA: CBA: 13 26 07
- Westpac JobKeeper Helpline 1300 731 073
- St George JobKeeper Helpline 1300 730 196
- Bank of Melbourne Jobkeeper Helpline 1300 784 873
- Bank SA JobKeeper Helpline 1300 669 472
What About You?
I’d love to hear your stories.
- Have you go the COVIDSafe app? What are your thoughts?
- What’s the next thing you’ll do, if restrictions have eased in your state?
Drop me a comment.
I’ve gotten techy (not tacky). Information sources are now linked in the text. Badge for me.