Australia to Quarantine all arrivals at Hotels

"But as the Prime Minister said we're in an nearly unique situation in this country in that even now a substantial part of the new cases are returned travellers".

From midnight on Saturday (March 28), all those returning to Australia will be placed in supervised self-isolation, in a hotel or other government-approved facility.

Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy said that we are doing a good job at the moment but discouraged a cavalier attitude, adding "the single most important thing we can do is completely stop the capacity for any returning traveller transmitting the virus".

After 14 days, travellers will then be allowed to return to their own homes.

This is enforceable by law and anyone who does not comply will be fined.

"That will include support by states and territories on managing the very hard issue of commercial tenancies", Mr Morrison said.

"States and territories will be quarantining all arrivals through our airports in hotels and other accommodation facilities for the two weeks of their mandatory self-isolation before they are able to return to their home", he said today, following the latest national cabinet meeting which took place this morning.

"Thank you for the way, over the course of this week, you have responded to very significant changes we've asked you to make to your lives and livelihoods", Mr Morrison said, noting that over a two-week period movement around the country has decreased by 80 per cent.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said stage three restrictions could be imposed in his state in the near future
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said stage three restrictions could be imposed in his state in the near future

"To give you an idea, yesterday there were 7,120 arrivals at our airports around the country".

"We would look after them when they get the virus, as some will do, as they continue to come home", Prof Murphy said. Prime Minister Scott Morrison is speaking in Canberra. We want those businesses to start again.

"We want these businesses to effectively go into a hibernation, which means on the other side, the employees come back, the opportunities come back, the economy comes back", he said.

This is expected to focus on helping businesses to "hibernate" through the next six months when they are forced to close. "Every day I can keep an Australian in work, the more we can do that, everyday matters", he said.

"I can assure you I would rather be in Australia more than in any other country in the world today".

"We will not take these decisions lightly". We have called on you as Australians to combine together in this effort and your response over the past week has been simply magnificent.

PM Morrison said, "We believe these important actions are the most important we can take right now because of what you've done, Australia. Let's keep saving lives, let's keep saving livelihoods".

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Event organizers were told to postpone or cancel non-essential gatherings of 250 or more until at least the end of March. As with all new cases, Ferrer explained that those individuals are now isolated as are their close contacts.

  • Ismael Montgomery