PSA supports mandatory Covid-19 testing for border and isolation workers
14 Aug 2020
The Public Service Association is strongly in favour of border control, managed isolation and quarantine workers getting a Covid-19 test as soon as possible, and supports the tests being mandatory and regular.
PSA members from multiple government agencies have been working together to keep the pandemic at bay, and the union says these efforts will continue unabated.
"Our union has consistently stressed the importance of testing in our discussions with both members and employers. It’s a safe and painless procedure, and we are pleased to see rapid steps being taken to ensure everyone gets it done," says Glenn Barclay, National Secretary of the PSA.
"At this point it is not clear how Covid-19 re-emerged in the community. Public health workers are investigating this question, and until they conclude their research it is wisest to avoid speculation or relying on unverified information or rumours."
Alongside mandatory testing, the PSA says progress is being made in deepening the levels of cooperation and integration between the different agencies involved in New Zealand’s pandemic response.
The union also advocates prioritising essential workers in other potentially at-risk industries for tests.
"It’s awful the disease has broken through, but we pushed it out once and we can do it again. We still have a first-class, world leading border security and public health system in place," says Mr Barclay.
"We will know more in time, and the systems that protect us will improve as required. However long that takes, New Zealand’s public servants will continue to work with the seriousness and dedication that has so far kept us safer than almost anywhere else on Earth."