Urgent Assistance Needed to Support India

27 April 2021

Labor calls on the Morrison Government to urgently assist the people of India, as the country faces record-breaking COVID-19 infections.

Australia must work closely with the Indian Government to determine how we can best help India to combat this crisis.

It is in all our interests to ensure the spread of COVID-19 in our region is brought under control.

While we must follow the medical advice around border closures, Labor’s thoughts are also with the estimated 10,000 Australian citizens and permanent residents who are stranded in India.

The number who are vulnerable and in need of assistance is only likely to grow as this situation worsens.

The Morrison Government must provide leadership to protect Australians at home and abroad.

Some of these Australians have been stranded since borders closed and have been waiting for more than a year for Scott Morrison to show some leadership and act on safe, national quarantine.

Jane Halton briefed the Prime Minister three times last year about the risks in Australia's quarantine system, noting:

“…it would be beneficial to consider national facility for emergency or surge situations. Changeability or localised outbreaks may also necessitate large scale evacuations from particular regions.”

National Review of Hotel Quarantine, October 2020

Despite these warnings, Mr Morrison still has not delivered on a plan to provide safe national quarantine capacity. His lack of leadership means Australians face increasingly perilous situations.

Authorised by Paul Erickson, ALP, Canberra.