The true cost of the pandemic

10 October, 2023

Hello. Russell Broadbent here, Member for Monash.

Apparently, Australia’s GDP suffered a cumulative loss of around $158bn because of the Covid pandemic.

But what about the cost of human suffering and trauma that so many Australians endured?

Highly respected Human Rights Commissioner, Lorraine Finlay, recently said “the true cost of the Covid-19 pandemic is almost impossible to measure and the broader human cost of the pandemic, such as families being separated by border closures and lockdowns, Australians being unable to return home from overseas, and schools being closed was substantial”. 

Even now, professional Victorian firefighters are still not allowed back to work if they’re not jabbed.

The human cost of decisions made by all levels of government continues to mount and we’ll be paying the price for decades.

But let me be clear, it’s the inhumane decisions made by state and territory governments that traumatised families and violated their human rights.

The stress and pressure put on parents with young children was unbearable. It was cruel and unnecessary:

When have we ever subjected children to vaccination for anything other than their own protection?

I’ll never forget the gut-wrenching stories of Nicole, a young birthing mum who was forced to wear a mask during labour. And young couple, Moe and Sarah, who were prevented from seeing their newborn baby for a week after his emergency birth, even though they tested negative for COVID-19 and were fully vaccinated!

It’s barbaric decisions like these which states and territories must be held to account for.

I agree with Ms Finlay’s assertion that “a royal commission should be the preferred option,” but for me, it’s the only option if we are to heal and understand why the human rights of Australians were so quickly and easily abandoned.

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