Government faults again by mismanaging the Australian Open

The Andrews Labor Government’s incompetence has put the prized Australian Open in jeopardy, serving up yet another blow to Victorians already suffering from the gaps in the major events calendar due to Labor’s second wave of COVID-19 in 2020.

After Minister Pakula’s role in managing overseas travellers in Labor’s botched hotel quarantine program, he has double faulted in deciding to use the Westin as a quarantine location for players and support staff arriving from overseas.

That international travellers should not mix with members of the public at the Westin, and these residents would be upset at not being consulted and being put at risk, was an eminently foreseeable problem.

Scrambling at the last minute to fix, it’s evident that this is just another Labor stuff-up. The government needs to secure the Australian Open and at the same time keep players, spectators, workers and the Victorian public safe.

If after 10 months of this pandemic the government is still confused about how to safely manage international arrivals for major events, how can Victorians trust that it will appropriately manage every other major event on the Victorian calendar for 2021?

Victorian businesses and jobs have suffered enough from the debacle of 2020. The Andrews Labor Government must act now to ensure both Victorians and event organisers that it can manage complex situations safely.

Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Tourism, Major Events and Sport, Cindy McLeish:

“This is another classic stuff-up by the Andrews Labor Government who have again treated Victorians with contempt.

“The government has again failed to do the basics by not consulting with the residents of the Westin, leaving Victorians doubting the confidence of the government to manage complex situations.

“The Andrews Labor Government must be able to provide a guarantee that the systems in place will work because Victorians cannot afford another lockdown.”

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