Werriwa Matters with Anne Stanley: The cost of lockdown

Lockdowns cause significant disruption to lives, especially the current 'hard lockdown' we are under in South-western Sydney.

In addition to the tragic lives lost, the economic cost to individuals, families and businesses is immense. It has wreaked pain and hardship from which many may never recover.

According to an analysis by EY Australia, the economic cost of lockdown in NSW alone, is estimated to be nearly $257 million each day. By 28 August, the lockdown will have cost the State economy over $17 billion.

These costs are significantly reduced with short and sharp lockdowns like we have seen in Victoria. However, it is now clear the only way out of this current Delta outbreak is through vaccination.

Sadly, the Federal Government has bungled the vaccination rollout. They failed to secure multiple vaccines, adequate supplies and put in place the logistics for a mass nation-wide inoculation program.

To date, the Morrison Government has invested $5 billion dollars into that vaccination program. A figure that pales in comparison to the cost of multiple lockdowns across the nation.

It didn't have to be this way. We recently learnt the Government rejected 40 million Pfizer vaccines in July last year, which would have been delivered in January.

Instead, the Morrison Government's failure on the vaccination rollout has put half the country in lockdown. Though no fault of our own, we are now left with a huge economic and social toll that will take many years to recover from.