Could This System Work In Australia?
Prime Minister Scott Morrison will urge states and territories to reconsider border closures at a national cabinet meeting later this week. "We must not allow this crisis, this pandemic, to force us to retreat into provincialism — that’s not the answer," he said on Friday. "If you impose a border, you can’t help but cause problems. That’s why we got rid of them in the first place."
A clear agreement between the states and territories on what constitutes a "hotspot" is to be determined, but it comes as Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk stated borders will remain closed throughout September for the state.
Dr Peter Collignon, the Australian National University's infectious disease expert, spoke of the traffic light system's potential to the Canberra Times: "I personally think this is what we have to do. This is going to go on for the next year or two at least. We need to have some sort of objective criteria we use, which will invariably change over time, so that we can make it as safe as reasonable without having too many restrictions."
However, some have expressed concerns over its effectiveness. "Unlike Melbourne’s current six-week lockdown, under the traffic-light system restriction levels could change more regularly depending on the number of cases," Associate Professor Erin Smith wrote in The Conversation. "This could potentially result in confusion among the public regarding what each colour actually means."