Coronavirus (3)

Mr PEDERICK (Hammond) (14:36): My question is to the Premier. Can the Premier update the house on how the Marshall Liberal government is supporting South Australians during the COVID-19 crisis?

The Hon. S.S. MARSHALL (Dunstan—Premier) (14:36): I thank the member for Hammond for his excellent question and, in fact, all the excellent questions today. People tuning in must wonder whether they have the right channel, but anyway it is good to have you on board.

Can I first of all say how proud I am of every single person in South Australia for the way they have responded. We haven't seen this universally. In fact, we have seen quite a lot of civil disobedience around the world, people who are really not responding well to this crisis. As I said earlier, it does speak to the character of South Australians that we are responding in a practical, considerate and considered way to this crisis which is enveloping the world at the moment.

We now know that we have had five consecutive days of zero new cases in South Australia. We look forward to Professor Nicola Spurrier's update this afternoon at about 3.30, when she will be giving today's result, and we hope that it continues in that direction. Despite these very good results, we can't become complacent in South Australia. It is a nasty disease, and we already have had four very tragic deaths in South Australia and we have four people, as of last night anyway, still remaining in hospital, with two of those people in a critical condition in the intensive care unit.

I am very much encouraging people to download the COVIDSafe app. This is very important so that we can play our part in protecting our own lives, our families' lives and those people who are in our immediate vicinity. I am really keen to see people download that app as quickly as possible. I am also very grateful to see the level of expenditure in SA Health in training and retraining nurses and midwives in our hospitals.

Today, we can report that more than 400 nurses and midwives in South Australia have completed their training to upskill their services and be ready for theCOVID-19 pandemic. Of course, we also announced today more than 500 new training programs, which will be available in the coming weeks for nurses and midwives in the public sector as well as in the private sector in South Australia.

As I was saying before, we continue to implement measures from our plan to support businesses through this sector and employment through this crisis with $10,000 cash grants. Last week, we announced $50 million in land tax relief, which will benefit both landlords and tenants here in South Australia; a rent relief package for some of those businesses that are leasing premises from the South Australian government; and also the fast-tracking of many construction jobs in South Australia.

This is not going to be a crisis that we come out of very quickly. This is not going to be a crisis that is not going to have a lasting effect. But our goal in South Australia unequivocally is to come out of this stronger than before. We are all working hard to make sure that we as a state come out of this crisis stronger than before, and cabinet continues to work diligently to make sure that we do everything we can to protect the health of the people of South Australia but also to maximise employment and enterprise out the other side.

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