Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk

How deceptive travellers squashed border compromise

Annastacia Palaszczuk's decision to close to border to NSW and the ACT was inevitable. Ever since the Premier announced the reopening of borders to everyone but Victoria in early June, the issue has been bubbling in the community.

Even then, MPs were wary of the decision as Queenslanders looked on with horror at the mess that was unfolding in Victoria.

The compromise situation - the borders were open, but not to people from hot spots - was working well for a while.

That's until a few selfish individuals walked right through the loophole in quarantine restrictions - that authorities needed people to tell the truth.

The two trios of Logan adventurers who've returned after jaunts to Victoria have spooked and angered Queenslanders with their ease of entry - particularly the women who brought the virus back with them.

Then we had the curious case of the consulate official who wasn't a consulate official but still somehow qualified for a quarantine exemption - unless you ask the federal government, who says he didn't.

 

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk made the right call to close the border again. Pic Annette Dew
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk made the right call to close the border again. Pic Annette Dew

 

Queenslanders rightly wanted the Premier to answer for how cases were managing to waltz into their state from hot spots.

There were debates going round and round about how the honesty loophole could be shut as police admitted it really couldn't so long as people were brazen enough to lie.

Even Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington managed to tie herself up when she demanded a reverse-onus-of-proof situation where everyone was made to prove they hadn't been to a hotspot, while long queues were somehow fast-tracked for locals.

In the end, the Premier has taken the easiest option, and the popular one.

She knows the tide of public sentiment has turned - the polling shows it - and she's surfing it while taking credit for keeping Queenslanders safe.

Originally published as How deceptive travellers squashed border compromise



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