Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern issues ultimatum to unvaccinated New Zealanders

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch
Oct 21, 2021 |

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has issued a stark warning to unvaccinated New Zealanders.

“ If you want to do the things you love then you need to get vaccinated.”

 She has also set out a new framework to deal with COVID-19.  

It has three levels: green, orange and red.

She said vaccine certificates will provide greater freedoms at each level, and there will be extra public health precautions built in at higher levels to minimise the impact of COVID-19 and suppress the spread of the virus.

 The new traffic light framework will allow businesses previously considered high-risk to fully open to vaccinated customers at green and orange and continue to operate with some restrictions at red. Businesses that choose to open to the unvaccinated will face restrictions in order to suppress the virus amongst those most likely to have it. 

Jacinda Ardern said “fully vaccinated people will be able to reconnect with family and friends, go to bars and restaurants and do the things they love with greater certainty and confidence.

“If you are still unvaccinated, not only will you be more at risk of catching COVID-19, but many of the freedoms others enjoy will be out of reach. No-one wants that to happen but we need to minimise the threat of the virus, which is now mainly spreading amongst unvaccinated people.”

“The choice is clear for anyone who wants to go to a bar, restaurant, gym or to attend gatherings.”

“The framework maintains the ability to move up levels when needed to control an outbreak, but is more flexible than the current alert level system.”

“That is because there is clear evidence the virus finds it harder to spread in vaccinated environments which is why businesses that provide services only to vaccinated people can operate at every level of the new framework and without any restrictions at green and orange.”

“A target of 90 percent fully vaccinated across each DHB region has been set as the milestone to trigger moving the country into the new system. This target ensures good regional spread across the country and will also help address equity issues within each region. 

“Ultimately we have balanced the desire to re-open quickly while continuing to keep people safe. This plan is unique to New Zealand and rewards New Zealanders who have chosen to be vaccinated, while also giving us the flexibility to step up our response if needed.”

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch

Chris Lynch is a journalist, videographer and content producer, broadcasting from his independent news and production company in Christchurch, New Zealand. If you have a news tip or are interested in video content, email [email protected]

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