House debates

Tuesday, 25 May 2021

Questions without Notice

COVID-19: International Travel

2:27 pm

Photo of Mark ButlerMark Butler (Hindmarsh, Australian Labor Party, Deputy Manager of Opposition Business in the House of Representatives) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is to the Prime Minister. Melbourne is today facing the 17th outbreak nationwide linked to hotel quarantine in just the past six months. How many more outbreaks do Australians have to endure before this Prime Minister steps up to his constitutional responsibility and creates a safe national quarantine system?

Photo of Scott MorrisonScott Morrison (Cook, Liberal Party, Prime Minister) Share this | | Hansard source

The government responded to the Halton review, which recommended the establishment of the national resilience facility in the Northern Territory. We did that and we've invested some half a billion dollars in the operation of that facility, which to this point in time has a 100 per cent success rate in preventing outbreaks from that facility. But I must say that the many other facilities, run by states and territories around the country, have a 99.99 per cent success rate in the conduct of hotel quarantine. As all of the states and territories and the Commonwealth know, the way we protect from outbreaks of COVID is not just by what happens in hotel quarantine but of course by the contact tracing that has been so effectively put in place by states and territories all around the country.

I commend the states and territories for the great job that they've been doing in concert with the federal government. We will continue to work each and every day with the states and territories, whether it's on the rollout of the vaccination program—we're working right now with a very recent proposal received from the Victorian state government which I think is a very comprehensive and well-thought-through proposal, and we're in the midst of quite detailed discussions with the Victorian government to bring that proposal forward. As a government, we will continue to fight the virus. That's what we have been doing these last 18 months, and we have been doing that together with Australians, with great success.

Mr Hill interjecting

Photo of Tony SmithTony Smith (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The member for Bruce will leave, under standing order 94(a).

The member for Bruce then left the chamber.

Photo of Scott MorrisonScott Morrison (Cook, Liberal Party, Prime Minister) Share this | | Hansard source

While we continue to fight the virus, the Labor Party continues to fight the government. But now they start to fight amongst themselves. That is an indictment of the Labor Party and its leadership.