The NSW Government’s brazen refusal to describe what the fuck actually constitutes an “essential worker” continues to baffle the press and the public alike. So it’s no surprise Thursday’s press conference became one of the spiciest yet after journos pressed Premier Gladys Berejiklian to define who can and can’t go to work under lockdown restrictions.
On Thursday morning, Berejiklian announced 65 new local cases of COVID-19 in NSW, 28 of whom were infectious in the community at some point. It’s that latter number we need to get close to zero before restrictions can be eased.
In response to questions why so many bloody shops are still open, Berejiklian pointed out that there is already a stay-at-home order in Greater Sydney and that “We stick by those rules.”
The reporter then asked if perhaps this current language could and should be tightened so that more people work from home, because “Victoria did it successfully”.
That’s when Berejiklian gave a wry chuckle and hit back with: “No, they didn’t.”
“Can I say the following: It is really important that if you can work from home, both the employer and the employee need to respect that. It is in the health orders,” the Premier added.
Journo: "Why not tighten the rules about who an essential worker is, Victoria did it very successfully?"
Gladys: "No they didn't"
— David Milner (@DaveMilbo) July 15, 2021
“Can I just finish. The health orders are very clear and in relation to retail can I say the following.
“If both anecdotally and evidence based, the vast majority of retail shops are not open, they are closed, but there are those shops that are still open which all of us rely on – pharmacists, supermarkets – there may be legitimate issues for why those are essential.”
Talk about a swipe at Victoria.
I don't really think Gladys should be throwing shade at Vic when we are on the verge of another lockdown because of NSW.
— Josh Taylor (@joshgnosis) July 15, 2021
Gladys hanging shit on Victoria while we're on the verge of our fifth lockdown because she resisted going into lockdown is a bold move. Hope that works out for her.????
— Jill Stark (@jillastark) July 15, 2021
The Berejiklian presser comes off the back of an interview NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet had earlier in morning on ABC Radio National.
When host Fran Kelly asked whether or not florists should still be open, he appeared to make a case for them as being an essential business.
“There may be a reason as to why they could be deemed to be an essential service. I will make sure this is raised today,” he said.
Who knows what the fuck is going on anymore. All we know is that, if you can, it’s best to stay home.