Andrew Dickens: We're not acting like there's a pandemic on

Author
Andrew Dickens,
Publish Date
Mon, 5 Oct 2020, 12:51PM
(Photo / NZ Herald)
(Photo / NZ Herald)

Andrew Dickens: We're not acting like there's a pandemic on

Author
Andrew Dickens,
Publish Date
Mon, 5 Oct 2020, 12:51PM

So Auckland waits to go to Level 1 and a return to the semblance of normality we had for 102 days earlier this year. 

But are we all ready. 

A number of scientists and health officials spoke over the weekend saying that they hoped we executed Level 1 better this time than we did last time. Because last time we were hopeless 

The evidence of this was the size of the Auckland cluster that has left our biggest city in limbo until today. 

While the virus managed to sneak through in a way that is still not known, the real concern is how it then spread through the community.  Once lockdown 2.0 began the flouting of gathering rules in churches kept the virus fires burning.

The Auckland cluster in Lockdown 2.0 was the single biggest outbreak this country has had in the pandemic. 

And that’s why the doors were shut and why they are only just being opened. 

So the question is, are we better at Level 1 than we were?

No, we are not.  My supermarket is strict and has a door person so mask wearing and app utilisation is strong. However, this weekend I went to another supermarket in another suburb and was shocked that I was virtually the only one wearing it. And I watched a stream of shoppers keep their phone in their pockets. 

Now I’m not a mask nazi, but I have got quite at home at wearing them when I plunge into crowded social situations.  Not just to keep myself safe but to make others feel more comfortable. What’s the big deal? 

Meanwhile, the Covid App usage has declined immensely over the past month.  When lockdown 2.0 first emerged there was a rush to download the app. 2.4 million people now have it and for a while used it diligently.  Now usage is a fifth of what it was a month ago. Thanks for nothing New Zealand. Again it’s not about you, though it will keep you safer, but it’s more about others. 

If you become a carrier like the schmucks from the Mount Roskill Evangelical Church who were sure it wouldn’t happen to them, then we’d all quite like to know where the hell you’ve been. 

We are actually not too bad at contact tracing.  Recently we tracked spread to a lift button and a rubbish bin.  In America they have no clue how their President came into contact with the virus. 

So why are we slack? We have become immune to the exhortations of the Health Department and the Prime Minister.  Be kind Be safe, Blah blah blah.  It might be nice to see other political leaders join the call.  Judith Collins has a mask in her bag but barely uses it and sees no problem in sticking her fingers in babies mouths. How powerful would it be if Collins and Shaw and Davidson and Peters and Seymour and others actually joined in the messaging?

We seem to believe that we’re immune from the second waves that are spreading through Europe and the Americas as we speak. Good luck.

We deserve the freedom but there is a price.. Use a mask and the App. Please.