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Your views: on mass unemployment, shopping, rent relief and expert opinion

Reader contributions

Today, readers comment on the Centrelink meltdown, teachers on the frontline, helping firms survive, and expert advice.

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Commenting on the story: Govt’s Centrelink apology after “maybe a million” left jobless

Government Services Minister Stuart Robert was quoted: “My bad not realising the sheer scale of the decision on Sunday night by national leaders that literally saw hundreds of thousands, maybe a million, people unemployed overnight.”

Is he saying that the Government didn’t have any idea just how many Australians work in the arts/entertainment/hospitality/recreation industries?

What about the census we fill in every 6 years?

Or is he just saying they didn’t think it through properly? It beggars belief – either way.

I know these are unprecedented times, but every business owner in these industries was aware in advance, I would hazard to guess, of the effect this would have on their business, their staff numbers and for individual people involved in that business.

To say that the Government did not realise the sheer scale alarms me about how decisions on other policy responses are being made. Tricia Walton

Commenting on the story: Special shopping for health workers as state borders close

I’m an SA teacher who still has to work, and we too are on the frontlines at the risk of becoming infected – younger children simply do not understand the social distancing rule.

I can’t shop early since the 7-8am hour has been locked out for those in need, and there is no toilet roll, tissues, sanitiser, meat etc to buy when I go shopping after work at 5pm.

I don’t qualify for any special considerations so I’m left without any of the main staples.

I’m sure there’s more like me out there too – it’s quite stressful, to say the least. – Julz Fisher

Commenting on the story: Calls to expand rent holiday to all SA small businesses

Rather than giving a rent free period, why doesn’t the Adelaide City Council reduce council rates so the landlords can pass that benefit to their tenants? – Jerry Rossi

Both state and federal governments need to make the call with regards to rent relief for all tenants facing this one in a lifetime health and financial crisis.

As a SME business owner, I have already conveyed to my staff that their positions are safe, as long as I can manage to meet business expenses.

However, it would also need to be fair for landlords with another call for banks to waive repayments for the corresponding period.

This is a time for cooperation within the business community, with the realisation that this current pandemic affect us all. – Frank Granozio

Commenting on the story: Government seeks reinforcement teachers as major school scales down

Your article setting out the contrasting views of experts references La Trobe University’s Associate Professor Hassan Vally, an expert on infectious disease epidemiology, as arguing that a nation-wide closure of all schools “would be counter-productive at this point”.

Whilst his expertise in infectious disease epidemiology cannot be doubted, the reasons he gives for keeping schools open are all outside his expertise, in particular, the “significant social and economic costs to society associated with this, as well as educational costs for the students”.

Whilst it is good that you quote experts, they should only be commenting in their expert capacity on things within their expertise. – Charles Gillam

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