In the line of duty

South Australia’s latest lockdown was extremely tough on small businesses, casual workers and parents with school aged children, but the acceptance has been widespread.

For people to voluntarily stand out in the pouring rain and freezing wind for hours on end simply to do their civic duty and get a Covid-19 test is remarkable.
Such scenes in Mt Barker last week – on the coldest Adelaide day in almost 30 years – were not pretty but were nothing short of inspirational.
The huddling queue inched its way forward towards the testing station with some people sheltering under umbrellas, others simply protected from the wind and rain by a sodden beanie and jacket.
Most of those in line were feeling unwell and, if they didn’t have a full-blown cold at the start of their ordeal, they almost certainly did at the end!
Why were they standing out in the elements and not tucked up at home in bed?
The short answer is they wanted to do the right thing.
They wanted to play their part in ensuring this State got on top of its latest Covid outbreak and beat the lockdown.
The scenes in Adelaide have also been remarkable with entire families spending up to 17 hours in their cars waiting to be tested at mobile testing stations.
Compare this willing compliance with the wild outrage in Sydney over the recent partial NSW lockdown and the differences in attitude are obvious.
South Australia’s latest lockdown was extremely tough on small businesses, casual workers and parents with school aged children, but the acceptance has been widespread.
Even though regional parts of the State are hundreds of kilometres from the identified ‘hot spots’ it appears the overwhelming majority were prepared to tough it out for the greater good. This is a remarkable attribute from a nation with a healthy mistrust of politicians meddling in people’s lives.
The call by local Federal MP Rebekha Sharkie for the government to reassess the Mt Barker testing regime is obvious.
The Government can and must do better to repay the community for its compliance and willingness to do the right thing.