Australians have faced the COVID-19 pandemic with resilience, courage and compassion.
We have seen many tough days.
Victorians, especially Melburnians, are now experiencing some of the toughest.
It is important to know that all Australians are willing you on to success. For Australia to succeed, we are all backing in Victoria to succeed.
That’s why as Prime Minister, together with all the Premiers and Chief Ministers, we are working together, pulling out all stops, to help Victoria beat this latest outbreak. Interstate rivalries are put aside. Political differences are left at the door. We all just want to back you in, and we know you can succeed.
As a federal level, in addition to the hundreds of public servants and health experts we have provided to support the Victorian Government, over 1,000 Australian Defence Force personnel are either on the ground lending a hand, or soon to be in Victoria.
This includes almost 200 ADF medical personnel supporting testing, almost 200 ADF personnel supporting Victoria Police control points, 150 ADF personnel supporting emergency vehicle crews, 100 ADF personnel supporting quarantine compliance, 50 ADF personnel augmenting contact tracing support and around 70 ADF personnel providing planning and logistics support.
Commodore Mark Hill has also been deployed to provide senior military logistics and planning support to the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services Public Health Team. We have an open offer on all ADF resources – whatever is required, will be provided.
For recently reopened businesses to be forced to shut down again is more than frustrating.
However, we’ve consistently said there will be a further phase of support that goes beyond September.
I can assure people in industries, businesses or parts of the country more affected by COVID-19, support will continue where it is needed.
We acknowledge the obvious fact that the need in Victoria will be far greater and we will provide that assurance of support. The need will be met.
The Government has delivered unprecedented support to Australians with the biggest economic lifeline in the nation’s history.
The JobKeeper program has supported 3.5 million workers in more than 950,000 businesses, including more than 250,000 Victorian businesses. Payments of up to $100,000 to boost cash flow have supported 750,000 businesses, including more than 190,000 businesses in Victoria.
Together, JobKeeper and the cash flow boost have already injected more than $10 billion into the Victorian economy.
Other measures to support Australians have included:
- Up to 180,000 apprentices with a 50 per cent wage subsidy
- Up to 340,700 JobTrainer places for school leavers and job seekers to upskill
- 1.6 million Australians are now receiving JobSeeker support payments
- The first $750 economic support payment to more than 7 million Australians was made in April, with a second $750 payment top up made to more than 5 million Australians from this week
During the pandemic, our priority has been to suppress the virus and keep the economy going, ensuring we save lives and livelihoods.
Whatever support is needed, we will make available.
I want to thank Victorians for the way they are dealing with these very hard times.
It’s a test and a strain but you will prevail because you have done it before and will do it again.
And together, we will rebuild and get Australia back on track.