Australian MP calls for people who refuse to have vaccine to be banned from all public places

Pangallo demands that the vaccine be made mandatory for workplaces, travel, and public venues

Namita Singh
Monday 19 July 2021 07:56 BST
<p>Sydneysiders wait in a queue outside a Covid-19 vaccination centre in the Homebush suburb of Sydney on 7 July 2021</p>

Sydneysiders wait in a queue outside a Covid-19 vaccination centre in the Homebush suburb of Sydney on 7 July 2021

An Australian parliamentarian has demanded that the Covid-19 vaccine be made mandatory for everyone above 18 and those who refuse to take it should have their movements “controlled and restricted.”

Upper House politician Frank Pangallo from the SA-Best party, has demanded that vaccination be made mandatory for workplaces, travel and when visiting public or hospitality venues.

“While people might still have a choice whether or not to get vaccinated, what they can do in the community will need to be controlled and restricted,” Mr Pangallo was quoted as saying by Adelaide Now.

He suggested that the government introduce “vaxport,” a document that carries proof of inoculation as a means to avoid a “health and economic catastrophe” in the nation.

The Scott Morrison government has, however, so far not suggested that it would be making vaccination mandatory for its citizens to carry out their public lives.

“I understand people will think this is a rather drastic and draconian step, but this pandemic continues to evolve in ways and waves nobody can predict,” Mr Pangolla said.

He said that even with the vaccines, “we do have do not seem to control its spread and those variants that are emerging — not just (the) Delta strain but the deadly Lambda variant from Peru.”

Mr Pangallo also urged the government to lift restrictions around the vaccination programme, thereby, allowing individuals to decide the vaccine they want, without waiting for eligibility.

Australia is on the cusp of a health and economic catastrophe which requires strong and decisive leadership to prevent the entire country going into lockdown,” he said.

He told NCA Newswire: “Hard times create strong leadership and strong leadership creates good times. This is what’s needed now. The pussyfooting around by Scott Morrison needs to stop.”

Chief public health officer Professor Nicola Spurrier told Adelaide Now that while authorities are investigating the compulsory vaccine for high-risk professions, it was not in the pipeline for a wider population.

She got support from health minister Stephen Wade, who also did not advocate for compulsory vaccination as he stated the government commitment that vaccine would be “free and voluntary.”

With over 10 million jabs administered, about 13 per cent of the Australian population is fully vaccinated.

Currently, Australians under 40 are not eligible for Pfizer shots due to vaccine shortage. Though Prime Minister Morrison announced last month that those under 40 have the option of getting the AstraZeneca vaccine after speaking with their doctor, the current advice from the Australian Technical Advisory (ATAGI) Group on Immunisation recommends AstraZeneca only for those over 60, saying Pfizer is the preferred vaccine for anyone under that age.

However, the under 40 age group should be able to get Pfizer vaccine by September or October, if the supply is not interrupted, reported 9News.

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