4.05pm: That’s a wrap for today
Thanks for reading our #ipswichtogether daily COVID-19 information update.
We’ll be back again tomorrow from 8am, and throughout the day, with regular updates and information you need to know about COVID-19 and its impact on Ipswich.
We’re also keen to share the good news stories taking place in our community about how people are helping one another and how businesses are adapting in these testing times. If you know a story we should highlight, let us know at email@example.com
Be sure to visit Ipswich First tomorrow at 8am for the latest daily blog.
3.55pm. Hardings Paddock closed immediately
Ipswich City Council advises that due to recent advice on COVID-19 public safety measures, Hardings Paddock campgrounds will be closed – effective immediately until further notice.
The closure is in line with the previously announced closure of all campgrounds across Queensland.
Council recognises the popularity of the grounds and the potential risk of increased activity with the upcoming school holiday period and has taken due diligence to minimise risks of potential group activities and assembly, cross contamination via onsite facilities.
Guests who have bookings for March and April will receive a full refund. Forward bookings after May 2020 are still available to be booked at this time.
The Flinders Goolman Conservation Estate will remain open for individual day use only and is not closed to public access.
3.40pm. What does good hand washing technique look like?
Regularly washing our hands is an important part of helping to slow the spread of COVID-19.
So what does good hand washing technique look like?
Check out the short video below by Dr Katie Allen, who is also a member of Federal Parliament, for how it should be done.
3.10pm. Border control measures in place from midnight
The new border control measures may not have an immediate impact for many Ipswich residents when they come into force at midnight tonight, but will likely have ramifications for the upcoming school holidays.
Queenslanders have been directed to restrict travel, avoid personal contact and stay in their homes and suburbs so the COVID-19 virus spread can be contained.
“People should stay in their own states and in their own suburbs,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.
“That applies to Queensland as well. People in the south-east should not travel to other parts of the state.
“Do not go on holidays. Do not travel unless absolutely necessary.”
There will be major fines for offenders, but also exemptions for legitimate travel.
2.40pm. The support you give now can make all the difference
Businesses right across Ipswich are doing it tough in these challenging times.
One way you can show your support is by ordering takeaway food from your favourite restaurant.
Many local outlets have added a delivery service or takeaway service in place of their regular dine-in offering.
Check out some of the local offerings here: Great Ipswich takeaway food options
Know of a great local takeaway food option not on the list? Send details to firstname.lastname@example.org
2.10pm. Campgrounds to close
All 470 campground in Queensland’s national parks, state forests and state managed recreation and protected areas will be closed from tomorrow (Thursday).
”There are no school holidays, we will be having a school break,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.
“I have been clear with Queenslanders that this Easter is not a holiday and for people to cancel their plans and stay home.
“Rangers will be contacting those currently at camp sites and those with bookings.”
1.15pm. Coping through COVID-19
Mental health is a growing concern as people struggle to cope with the impacts of COVID-19. It’s important to remain connected to friends and loved ones despite the physical distance caused by social distancing and isolation.
If you are struggling with your mental health and need immediate support, the following 24 hour helplines are available:
Call 13 11 14 or chat online from 7pm to midnight every night.
Call 1300 22 4636 or speak to someone online or join the COVID-19 forum
Tips on maintaining positive mental health and wellbeing and looking after ourselves and each other are available here:
12pm. PM announces National COVID-19 Coordination Commission
A new National COVID-19 Coordination Commission will coordinate advice to the Australian Government on actions to anticipate and mitigate the economic and social effects of the global coronavirus pandemic.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said it was about working cooperatively across private-to-private and public-to-private networks to unlock resources, break bottlenecks and fix problems so Australian families, businesses and communities are supported through the challenging months ahead.
Neville Power has been appointed chairman and brings both high level business expertise and a strong commitment to social issues.
An executive board of commissioners will advise the Prime Minister on all non-health aspects of the pandemic response. The board will work in tandem with the Chief Medical Officer Dr Brendan Murphy, who continues to lead the Commonwealth’s response.
11.20am. Ipswich pools to close today
All pools in the Ipswich City Council area will be closed from 5pm this afternoon.
The decision follows instructions on Tuesday night from Prime Minister Scott Morrison.
Read the full story: Ipswich pools to close today
10.50am. Residents asked to avoid Centrelink offices if possible
Centrelink offices across Australia, including those in Ipswich, have been inundated with customers over the past 48 hours.
Services Australia has asked that residents don’t go to Centrelink offices unless there is a critical need to be there.
“Please don’t visit us if you currently get a payment. If you’re already on a payment that is eligible for the Economic Support Payment or the Coronavirus Supplement, you do not need to do anything. You’ll get paid automatically,” Services Australia said in a social media post.
“For people who already get Centrelink payments, you don’t need to do anything to get the $750 Economoic Support Payments. We’ll pay you automatically in mid April and July. Please don’t call or visit us.
“For current job seekers already getting an income support payment like JobSeeker Payment, you also don’t need to do anything to get the fortnightly $550 Coronavirus Supplement. You’ll get that when the time comes in late April.
“If you’ve lost your job or your income has reduced and you don’t already have a CRN [customer reference number], your first step is to call us on 132 850.
“We know wait times are long, but please persist. We’re open Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm and weekends, 9am to 5pm.
“You don’t have to go to a service centre to get a CRN or provide proof of identity. We can help you with both of these over the phone.
“If you already have a CRN, you can lodge a claim for JobSeeker Payment online 24/7.”
Services Australia also acknowledged they are experiencing intermittent issues online saying in a social media post, “We’re working hard to expand the capacity of our online services.”
Check the Services Australia website for the most up to date information.
10.30am. Early voting centres open to 9pm today
Early voting centres across Ipswich are open to 9pm today.
The extended hours have been put in place to allow as many voters as possible to get their votes in early for the local government elections and Bundamba by-election.
Early voting centres in Ipswich are at:
- WG Hayden Humanities Centre, 56 South Street, Ipswich.
- Town Square Redbank Plains Shopping Centre, Shop 38a, 357-403 Redbank Plains Road, Redbank Plains.
- Springfield Tennis Centre, Unit 1, 44 Sportstar Drive, Springfield Central.
- 1/14 Coal Street, Bundamba.
- Yamanto Shopping Village, Shop 29, 512-514 Warwick Road, Yamanto.
Bring your own pen or pencil.
The Electoral Commission of Queensland is also providing eligible voters, including those who identify as having an impairment, disability or a low level of literacy, those advised by a medical practitioner to remain in isolation during the election period due to exposure to COVID-19, with access to telephone voting.
To register for telephone voting, phone 1300 912 782 and select option 1.
Read more: Record numbers of residents voting early
9am. Why Social distancing matters
The more space between you and others the harder it is for the virus to spread.
Some ways to practise social distancing:
– Keep a distance of 1.5 metres between you and others – but stay connected.
– No handshakes
– Considering whether outings or travel are really necessary
For more advice on how you can flatten the curve, follow Queensland Health’s advice on the coronavirus.
8am. West Moreton now has 13 COVID-19 cases
West Moreton Health announced three new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the total to 13 cases for the West Moreton region.
Queensland has 78 new confirmed cases of novel coronavirus. There are now 397 COVID-19 cases across the state.
Read more on the latest Queensland Health update here.