Coronavirus- voice of the concerns of our community
This petition had 4,884 supporters
Dear Health ministers, Education ministers and Graham Perrett
The Coronavirus that has caused the shut down of cities in China is causing severe panic amongst the Chinese community which is largely based in the southern suburbs of Brisbane. This includes many schools and childcare centres which majority of students and children are of Chinese ethnicity. Ie, Macgregor, Sunnybank etc.
The virus is not just a problem in Wuhan but spreading into multiple provinces in China.
You may or may not know that due to the fall of Chinese New Year being early this year, a large number of students and families have returned to China to celebrate the Chinese New Year. Majority of these kids will return to Brisbane in the coming week or 2 for the start of the new school year.
Being Chinese myself, we see a lot of information on social groups that suggest the cases of infection have been reported lower than what we see in Western media. The extreme actions of the government to lock down cities and build 2 new hospitals as well as mobilising military health personal could be seen as a measure of the severity of the situation.
We need to realise that this infection started well before the first reported case of death and the closing of access in and out of Wuhan . This is also why we see so many cases in other provinces and increasing around the world. It is also widely known that it’s the biggest movement/migration of people happens during this period (spring break period) which has increased the risk for spread of disease.
Our kids risk being infected and the spike in cases could increase over the coming days. We strongly suggest an exclusion period for students returning from China to help control the spread of disease. We understand this is not a decision that will be made lightly but its one that will be the most sensible to err on the side of caution. Our children easily transmit communicable diseases as they tend not to practise clean hygiene techniques like sneezing into elbows and washing hands etc. The young also are not able to communicate that they are sick as easily and as quickly as adults.
Our Chinese language school already has taken the extreme step to close down for the first 2 weeks of term as this is said to be the exclusion period for the disease.
Hong Kong Government is also delaying the start of school by 2 weeks to protect their student and children.
Many parents have emailed schools and childcare centres to voice their concerns but response has been that they are powerless to do anything without directive from health department or education department.
We all need to realise the next 2 weeks will be critical in preventing the spread of this virus amongst our community as its our general population that will be returning home and not just tourists.
We eagerly await your response.
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