Petition launched to open border to areas with no cases
A pregnant mum has created a petition directed at Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to open the Queensland border to locations that have no active COVID-19 cases.
Brisbane mum Elizabeth Ishii said she was heartbroken over some of the distressing stories which have come to light on border issues.
She was particularly upset to hear the story about the Ballina mother who lost one of her unborn twins after travelling to Sydney rather than Brisbane as she determined the exemption application would come too late.
More recently, she was devastated to hear Sarah from Canberra's story on not being able to see her dying father only to miss his funeral too due to mandatory quarantine.
"That's why I decided to make it," she told The Courier Mail.
"There's so many stories and situations that shouldn't be happening."
Ms Ishii's husband works in NSW, and while he is in mandatory quarantine currently, it took three weeks and countless emails to get their exemption case looked at so he can arrive home and quarantine in a hotel in time for the birth of their second child.
The change.org petition, made late last month, says the hard border closure has "effected many lives on both sides of the border".
"Waiting for a national definition of a COVID hotspot is taking too long and even then, the Queensland Premier has made no promises to follow it," Ms Ishii has written on the petition.
"South East Queensland now has more cases than the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales and yet the Queensland government continues to not listen to the pleas of Queenslanders caught out in the mess or the Australian people."
Read some of the points Ms Ishii wrote on the change.org page for Ms Palaszczuk:
* You cannot label an entire state a COVID hotspot when outside of the metro area, there are no cases.
* You can no longer claim to be cautious, expecting cases to spread from a metro area to regional areas, when this has not happened in more than three weeks and counting.
* You cannot claim to be looking after our economy when you are not allowing those that have jobs that rely on the border to travel freely to those jobs.
* You dare to allow mass gatherings at sporting events that bring the players from interstate, when there are Queenslanders who cannot return to their own homes after a days work.
* You expect Queenslanders to pay mandatory quarantine fees while also sacrificing their income for two weeks just so they can come home.
* You expect families who want to visit their dying loved ones, to wait in a cue to be given an exemption that most likely will be denied.
*You claim you have compassion for families that are struggling with your decisions but refuse to listen to them and won't own up to your own mistakes.
* You claim to be focused on health, but seem to forget that mental health is just as important as physical health.
* You tried to help by creating a "bubble" that would allow border communities to travel to and from their homes without considering how far the real border community actually extends.
Originally published as Petition launched to open border to areas with no COVID-19 cases