South Australia’s premier has confirmed he will move to abolish state lockdowns when vaccination rates hit 80 per cent – expected to be before Christmas.
The South Australian Premier has promised his residents they will be reunited with their families in Covid-locked down jurisdictions for Christmas, provided the state meets a key vaccination target.
Steven Marshall confirmed to Sky News on Sunday that his state remained committed to the national plan, and that the borders would reopen to NSW, Victoria and the ACT once SA reached 80 per cent double dose vaccination rates.
Based on its current trajectory, the state should hit the double dose “well before Christmas”.
Mr Marshall said the state could still lock out some interstate travellers, but that is likely to be based on local government areas or exposure sites.
Mr Marshall’s commitment is markedly different from the Premiers of Western Australia, Queensland and Tasmania, who refuse to be drawn on what will trigger them to reopen their borders.
Mr Marshall said the entire country will need to learn to live with Covid-19.
“ … We know that as we increase our vaccination rate, we reduce that transmission rate and hospitalisation, those people needing to go onto ventilators and those people who ultimately die from this disease,” Mr Marshall said.
“ … That’s what we’re signed up to in South Australia.
“We’re going to have to live with it (the virus); it is going to be a tough period the next three to four months, what I’m hopeful of though is we can increase that vaccination rate, we can stick to the science, the evidence.”
In contrast, WA Premier Mark McGowan said last week that his state would remain closed to NSW residents for Christmas, even if they are fully vaccinated.
“Even though you might be vaccinated, you can still transmit the virus,” Mr McGowan said.
“So we’re just going to have a very strong approach to these things.
“We’ll make a decision when it’s safe to do so.”