Regions relieved as borders re-open

Published: Monday, 25 May 2020 at 5:08:49 PM

A sigh of relief sounded over the Midwest and Northwest with the announcement of WA regions re-opening from this Friday.

City of Greater Geraldton Mayor Shane Van Styn said local governments, businesses and residents have finally been heard.

“It’s not just Geraldton that need this - but all of the Coral Coast and the Northwest,” he said.

“We are so relieved that our voices have finally been heard.

“All businesses have suffered throughout this pandemic, not just our tourism operators, it’s also our services such as bakers, mechanics and beauticians.

“That’s why restrictions need to lift even more – as tourists start to descend on our towns and cities, we need to be ready.

“Our businesses that can open and still socially distance should be allowed to without arbitrary numbers of persons.

“We need to be able to welcome tourists and visitors into our businesses and be on the front foot and ready for the influx,” he added.

Since borders closed in April amidst the COVID-19 health crisis, some regional borders were lifted allowing some travel, however the Midwest and Northwest were cut off from Perth and the south. 

However Mayor Shane Van Styn continued to lobby hard on behalf of the Coral Coast and Northwest, saying it simply wasn’t good enough.

“With Geraldton the Regional Capital for the Midwest Gascoyne region, we took the lead on lobbying the state government to open up the borders to allow travel to the Coral Coast and further up north,” he said.

“This isn’t just about Geraldton, but about what is in the best interest for everyone in the region – from Dongara, up to Kalbarri and Exmouth.

“We’re proud to have stood up for everyone in the Coral Coast, and together – the Midwest and Northwest will recover.

“I thank everyone for their support in getting our region re-opened to the rest of the state and I urge everyone to keep lobbying to help us lift restrictions even more.

“We need everyone’s support in this to get us through to the next phase.” 

For more information about regions and borders re-opening, head to the state government’s website.

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