COVID-19 Statement 

Publish Date: 16 March 2020

Dear Buloke communities,

We are in some trying times as we face the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. The immediate future will require people to adjust their daily living habits and follow the advice coming from the country's leading experts, be patient with disruptions but most of all do what we do so well in Buloke - look after each other and think beyond ourselves about how our actions can help the most vulnerable parts of our population.

Some measures, changes in services, advice and cancellations of events and outings may feel excessive for us in Buloke, but in the scheme of the worldwide spread of this virus and the heightened importance of protecting our vulnerable, it is so very important we follow the advice given to support our health services and keep our communities safe.

While there is lots of information coming through from many channels, what we know for sure is we will need a whole-of-community approach to tackle this challenge, and that’s something we already have a head start on as we know Buloke communities excel when it comes to looking out for each other.

To prevent the spread of the virus, everyone needs to follow the simple steps to increased hand hygiene. You will see and hear this advice often as it is proven as the best way to flatten the spread of the virus. If you feel unwell, it is most important you don't attend school, work or public places where avoidable. While you most likely won't have COVID-19, during this time, any type of cold or flu leads to weakened immune systems which we need to contain. If you have someone in your household who is vulnerable or has an underlying condition, consider limiting your movements and public gatherings for the time being.

If you think you may have COVID-19, it is important you call ahead before presenting to a GP or health service. You can also call the hotline for information on what to do, the number is 1800 675 398.

We will be sharing the latest advice from health officials as it comes to hand, in as many ways as possible. The change in information and advice can be rapid, we will be reacting and keeping you up to date constantly. It is important you stay informed.

We will also share information as changes are made to service delivery as we work through our pandemic plan, own staff availability and the best way to keep our communities safe.

Making decisions based on your own situation is important, understanding your personal responsibility for following health advice is also important. It may feel like it doesn't really matter in Buloke if you wash your hands or not, but it could mean the difference between halting the spread of the virus to one of our vulnerable residents or not.

If you know someone who might need an extra phone call to say hello, make it. If you think there is someone in your street that could do with an anonymous delivery of toilet paper to their front door, be that person. If you are aware of someone who might not be getting the messaging about ways to prevent the spread of the virus or the importance of looking after themselves make that friendly phone call and weave it kindly into the conversation. It could be your voice that helps their decision making. If you think there may be vulnerable people on their own who could be a bit frightened by all of this, write them a letter with your phone number and drop it in their letterbox. These are the things that make Buloke the wonderful place it is and this is our excuse to unleash a pandemic of Buloke kindness, via social distancing measures, and support those around us.

Remember health services, community services, pharmacies, local businesses, schools and other local organisations are working hard at understanding the way forward while trying to support their communities. Be patient and understanding as these organisations adjust and work through this situation.

Cr Carolyn Stewart, Mayor Buloke Shire Council.

Stewart Thumbnail

End release 
For further information contact Manager Customer Engagement, Travis Fitzgibbon on 03 5478 0181 or