Are our two federal politicians back in Canberra today?
BOTH the Labor Member for Richmond, Justine Elliot, and Nationals Page MP, Kevin Hogan, have both travelled to Canberra to resume parliament for the spring sittings.
Sittings of parliament have been rather sporadic during the COVID-19 pandemic, but they are back at work today.
It’s been problematic getting everyone together and some MPs travelling from hot spots have had to self-isolate at their Canberra digs for 14 days in order to be in the chamber today.
Many others have not braved the trip south and will join sittings online, although they won’t be allowed to vote.
While people in Australia probably think its about time our politicians were back at work, according to Mr Hogan the business of government has been going on in the background.
“I like everyone else have done many things by Zoom and other forms of technology,” he said.
“Parliamentary Committee meetings and many other forums have been carried out using different technologies over the last few months.
“Parliament itself, given that to vote in the chamber for divisions you need to be physically present, has presented more challenges.
“Looking at ways to do that without everyone necessarily been physically present is a priority.”
Politicians and staffers will be encouraged to wear masks in public spaces throughout Parliament House.
“All precautions are been taken with social distancing, hand hygiene and mask wearing,” Mr Hogan said.
“This is very important given when MP’s leave, we go to every corner of the country.”