Bay of Plenty Civil Defence and Emergency Management is reminding people about what’s required during lockdown over the weekend and the importance not to return to “normal life” during the national state of emergency across New Zealand.

Group Controller Angela Reade says people must not travel to and from baches or second homes.

“It’s crucial you don’t leave the house this weekend. This breaks the chain and stops the virus spreading. Stay home. Save Lives,” Angela says.

“Despite it still feeling like summer in some areas of our region we can’t put any extra pressure on the emergency services which need to respond to the COVID-19 situation. This means sticking to safe activities and avoiding swimming, surfing, hunting and tramping.”

“Keep exercise solitary or with people in your bubble.”

Challenges currently being faced by CDEM groups across New Zealand include finding ways to best care for transient people including tourists, campers and the homeless. Every effort is being made to find accommodation or suitable locations for them to self-isolate.   

In Rotorua homeless people have been provided temporary accommodation by Ministry of Social Development, while in Whakatāne they are being cared for by the Salvation Army.

In Tauranga, Ministry of Social Development are still working with local agencies to set up support for homeless people.

“Further local welfare needs assessment and support systems are being established and we will share details of those once confirmed. In the meantime, people should contact the free government helpline on 0800 779 997 if they require assistance,” Angela says

“We have people in campervans and while many may be self-contained, most have nowhere to park up. Everything is being done to make sure people get the assistance they need to comply with the self-isolation requirements.”

Gathering together for funerals and tangi is not permitted while New Zealand is at Alert Level 4.

Noho Tawhiti. Tū Kotahi – Sit at a distance. Stand as one

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During lockdown we may experience all sorts of things: anxiety, loneliness, fear. Need to talk? Free phone or text 1737.