Traffic lights still not ready to go

With less than 48 hours before New Zealand moves to the traffic light system, Labour still hasn’t put in place key elements to make the system work, National Covid-19 Spokesperson Chris Bishop says.

“Jacinda Ardern announced the traffic light system over a month ago, yet key elements are still unresolved.

“Kiwis who have been vaccinated overseas are reaching out to me because the Ministry of Health have told them it will be 14 days before their vaccination status can be confirmed in New Zealand, yet the traffic light system kicks in from Friday.

“Those who have requested a paper copy of their vaccine certificate have been told they won’t receive them until next week.

“For thousands of people this means they won’t be able to access services over the weekend because Labour didn’t plan for Delta and has been unable to deliver. This just isn’t good enough.

“This morning, we had a 100 page Health Order dropped less than 48 hours before the Order came into effect.

“What has the Government done in the last month that it was only able to give affected businesses less than two days to understand this complex new system

“Clearly the traffic light system was not ready to go when it was announced in October.

“On Monday Grant Robertson said simply that Cabinet will monitor the impact of the red light setting and wait until January before deciding if any support payments are needed. This is harsh news for bars and restaurants across Auckland who suffered 100 days of lockdown and now will be unable to host large Christmas and New Years’ events.

“Andrew Little managed to confuse matters more, suggesting yesterday that someone who hosted a Christmas or New Years’ function where someone wasn’t vaccinated could face a $12,000 fine.

“It is clear Labour never had a plan for Delta and now we have the situation where we are scrambling to get a vaccine certificate system working.

“Countries around the world have implemented vaccine certificate systems quickly and efficiently. The European Union implemented their system in July.

“Labour have once again shown a track record of being big on communication, weak on delivery.”