Kate Hawkesby on lockdown: The overwhelming vibe is confusion

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Thu, 26 Mar 2020, 10:39AM
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Kate Hawkesby on lockdown: The overwhelming vibe is confusion

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Thu, 26 Mar 2020, 10:39AM

I think the overwhelming vibe right now is confusion.

I think we’ve done shock, we’ve done the ‘oh wow this is serious’ and we’ve done annoyed.

Now confusion reigns.

Essential services remains a biggie, lots of us still don’t know, it seems like the government isn’t that sure either, a lot of mixed messages out there.

Yesterday morning we were told Post Shops would not be open to pay bills as that was not regarded an essential service, and could be done online.

By last night that had changed again and suddenly they said Post Shops fall into same category as banks and therefore could be open to pay a bill, if physical distancing was maintained.

So which is it? Well who would know.

The other confusion is around how a lockdown works.

And that’s not just an issue here but worldwide.

The front page of the British papers yesterday were heaving with various bits of advice on what people can and can’t do in a lockdown.

Unfortunately what’s become apparent when our leaders continue to ask for common sense, is that a lot of people don’t have any.

‘Can my cleaner still come round?’ people asked. ‘Why can’t I go kayaking?’ said others.

It seems – “stay home” – is just a bit too ambiguous for many people.

Hopefully we work this out real soon because lives literally depend on it.

Much like we trialled self isolation and initially policing ourselves in our tackling of this.. we appear to be going down the same track with the lockdown. Police will show discretion, it’ll be up to us, suck it and see.

The better approach may’ve been to go hard early – lots of Police, lots of checkpoints, hammer the message home, ram it down people’s throats, given many still don’t know if they can have their cleaner round or not.

But this government enjoys a softly softly approach and a lot of talk first – action later.

So let’s see if we can behave as the model citizens we’re expected to and get this right.. or whether they have to up the ante in a couple of weeks when too many people are flouting it.

I did hear despite all advice not to head to baches and beaches, the road south to the Coromandel out of Auckland yesterday was apparently packed with cars and boats heading to holiday homes.

To be honest, what I’d really like to see right now is a bit more clarity and hard detail around what’s happening for employers and employees, small businesses and non-essential services.

Many of them are still really confused.

So locking down some facts right now, would be super helpful.