By Juliano Oliveira
The vaccination rollout of school staff and childcare workers in Queensland will be brought forward in light of the recent Delta strain cases in the South-East region.
Childcare educators, teachers, teacher aides, management and administrative staff, groundskeepers, cleaners, locum staff, regular volunteers and other ancillary school and early learning support staff have been added to Queensland’s 1B priority list for COVID-19 vaccinations.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the action means they are given priority for vaccinations against COVID-19.
“The Delta strain has taken a heavy toll on our schools, and we need to provide the best possible protection for staff and students,” the Premier said.
“This strain of the virus moves incredibly quickly, and we need to be just as fast in our response.
“The Queensland Chief Health Officer has approved that any individual working in an early learning, primary, secondary or special school is now in the high-risk priority group.”
FIFO, freight and distribution centre workers have also been added to the high-risk priority group.
“These changes, coupled with the remarkable work of Queenslanders during this lockdown, will bolster our efforts to get on top of the latest outbreak.”
Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services Yvette D’Ath said the unpredictability of the Delta strain had changed the game when it came to schools.
“Our recent outbreak spread in schools and through school contacts,” Ms D’Ath said.
“By protecting them, this provides extra protection for our young people.”
Minister for Education Grace Grace encouraged all education workers to get vaccinated across state and non-state schools.
“Staff in schools and childcare centres across Queensland are now able to register for a vaccination on the Queensland Health website,” Ms Grace said.
“I would urge any eligible worker who has not yet been vaccinated to jump online and register.
“I am also asking schools to be as flexible as possible when it comes to assisting staff to access leave to attend their vaccination appointments.”