Australians in home quarantine will soon receive timed text messages to ensure they are isolating or face a visit from the cops as part of a compliance crackdown in Queensland.
The texts are part of the state’s new Covid-19 laws – which come into effect immediately – that give people in home quarantine a ten minute window to respond as part of a real-time check in system.
Health Minister Yvette D’Ath told parliament on Thursday residents who are isolating at home after returning from to the state will receive daily text messages at random times of the day from Queensland Health.
Each message will contain a hyperlink which sends their location to authorities as part of the state’s commitment to grapple the evolving delta-variant situation.
‘This means Queensland Health will be able to ensure individuals in home quarantine are at the residence they’re lawfully required to be at,’ Ms D’Ath said.
‘It specifically allows authorities to identify if anybody is away from their approved residence.’
Anyone caught in breach of Covid health orders will be visited by police with residents at risk of fines or being forced to enter hotel quarantine at their cost.
It is understood the new compliance measures are part of home quarantine trials that will come into place ahead of the school holidays, with families and boarding school students stuck interstate finally allowed to return home.
The trials will also be extended to anyone entering quarantine who is deemed a close contact or returning from Covid-19 hotspots.
Queensland has been left relatively unscathed from the Delta variant outbreak that has ravaged both NSW and Victoria due to its tough stance on border closures.
Last Monday, the premier Annastacia Palaszczuk reopened the application process for those seeking to relocate to Queensland, as well as returning Queenslanders.
Those wishing to relocate to Queensland will be required to prove they are genuine with proof of employment or a change of residential address.
It comes as NSW reinstated a border bubble with Queensland on Monday, allowing people in northern NSW who aren’t locked down to travel into the Sunshine State.
Vaccinated people with a Queensland border pass can travel north of the border to provide compassionate care or essential shopping if they come from 12 northern NSW local government areas that came out of lockdown on Saturday.
The border pass is not available for social reasons, like attending weddings or funerals or visiting family or friends but for essential work, medical needs or school.
The Sunshine State recorded three new cases of Covid-19 on Thursday, while NSW recorded 1,351 new locally-acquired infections.Internet Explorer Channel Network