ECEC could soon be considered an essential part of easing COVID-19 restrictions

ECEC could soon be considered an essential part of easing COVID-19 restrictions

by Freya Lucas

January 13, 2022

Early childhood education and care (ECEC) could soon be added to the list of occupations which have an eased requirement for testing and isolation in the event of COVID-19 close cases following a decision by the Federal Government to ease restrictions for those working in food and grocery supply.


A cabinet meeting will be held later today to make the decision about whether or not to allow asymptomatic close contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases to go to work in essential sectors such as food and grocery supply, transportation, energy and waste industries and perhaps ECEC. 


Close contact isolation rules that require furloughing of workers have created significant bottlenecks in many sectors and industries, including ECEC. 


As such, the Canberra Times reported, the Commonwealth is preparing to mount the case for which sector should have current restrictions based on advice from the peak medical advisory committee, AHPPC.


Several key federal ministers led by senator Anne Ruston, the acting Small Business Minister, have begun meeting with industry leaders. Attorney-General Michaelia Cash also met with key union representatives and Safe Work Australia in anticipation of today’s meeting.


States and territories have already begun implementing easing of restrictions on essential workers in food and grocery supply who are asymptomatic, but only for roles that are not customer facing.


Outcomes of the Cabinet meeting as they relate to ECEC will be reported when they come to hand. To access the original coverage of this story please see here