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State govt approach ‘heavy handed and extreme’

THE increased police presence in western Sydney has been slammed as “heavy handed and extreme”.

Cumberland City Mayor Steve Christou says it demonstrates the bias towards the eastern suburbs and a condescending and patronising approach to western Sydney.
The State Government has further tightened restrictions today, as well as increasing the numbers of police to help make sure health orders are being obeyed, as it fights the growing number of infectious Covid-19 cases in the community and unlinked cases of community transmission.
The Mayor said the extended lockdown showed the so-called leaders at State and Federal levels, bumbling their way through as they did last year.
“After 18 months, we should have a better plan than ‘shut up shop’ and ‘hide inside’,” he said.
“While our elected leaders and public servant lives and exuberant salaries have not been affected by these lockdowns, the rest of Australia who live in the real world and struggle through private employment, have been suffering through these extended and avoidable lockdowns.”
He said that in the longer term, the way out of this was through a comprehensive vaccination program.
“We offered to help with the rollout – as we have the appropriate facilities and infrastructure to fully and properly execute it. The bungled roll out of the vaccination program is why we’re in this situation, while other countries are now enjoying more freedoms,” he said.
“We are ready, willing and able to assist with the rollout of the vaccination programs.
“Given the latest turn of events and the worsening of the Covid crisis, we once again call to be allowed to administer the vaccines through our facilities.
“The multiple alert venues in Merrylands is alarming so it’s critical we follow the public health orders. I encourage everyone to look closely at the alert venues and to closely follow NSW Health advice.
“The only way out of this in the short term is through a wide testing regime and by closely following the public health orders.”
He asks everyone to follow the rules that are in place. Non-compliance is not an option. Do not leave home unless you absolutely need to.
“While I’ve spoken up to support small business during the lockdown, I do encourage everyone to follow the rules and try to get this under control,” the Mayor added.
Cumberland City Council has opened the Merrylands Library to NSW Health for a testing centre to help support their efforts to get the virus under control.
The council’s environmental health officers will be out with NSW Health staff checking businesses to ensure that they’re using QR codes, sanitising and adhering to the public health orders.