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Risk assessment request over breach ‘fobbed off’

Letter

Re: Covid-19 risk assessment based on multiple factors, Sept 9 story.

The request, through your newspaper, for answers to questions on what were the assessment factors has simply been fobbed off. I am surprised that one of your journalists has not followed up on this to provide your readers with all of the information.

The salient facts seem to be that a group of construction workers ran a red light and escaped Auckland’s Level 4 lockdown to come here. How did they get through the “border”?

Having then been discovered here in Gisborne, what checks/inquiries were made to see if these individuals had been vaccinated and/or recently tested for Covid-19?

As we have all been exhorted by the Prime Minister and her Director-General of Health to treat everyone as if they have Covid-19 we, as residents of a virus-free area, should be entitled to know what were the factors that led our local Medical Officer of Health to conclude there was a very low risk. Surely if these individuals had breached border restrictions, why on earth would you trust them to honestly answer questions about prior contacts, either with others or places of interest?

An unsubstantiated “very low risk” of transmission of the Delta variant is not “no risk”.

Gordon Webb

Footnote response from Tairawhiti medical officer of health Dr Osman Mansoor:

There has been no spread from these individuals. This fact was true last week, when the assessment was made — after they had been in the district longer than the median incubation period.

Again, I urge our community to follow the rules to keep our district safe. This includes early testing if you get symptoms, especially if you have been in contact with someone out of the district — whether they are here legally or not.

Leave a Reply to Maree Cancel reply

  1. John Adams says:

    Gordon, I am confused over what you are asking for here.
    If you want a list of answers the construction workers gave, or indeed information as to their vaccination status, then surely you (as a lawyer) would know that such information would not be shared with the public due to its obviously protected nature.
    If you wish to simply vent that some people broke the lockdown restrictions, then it may be wise for us in Gisborne to take a more friendly approach to such situations given we are certainly not above reproach on this issue.

  2. Dave says:

    The fact that no spread happened fobs off what could have happened, and what should never have happened. I hope they all get fined. A total blatant disregard for the rules and the people of Tairawhati. Defies belief really.

  3. Maree says:

    I think the real questions that need to be asked are, how many others managed to escape the border to Te Tairāwhiti? How many vacant homes now have the lights on at night? How many from Auckland are shopping in the supermarkets, dairies and other places?
    It only takes one case of covid in this town, and we will be back to level 4. That is why a police checkpoint at Matawai needs to happen early on before people from Auckland arrive unchecked.