Growing push to lift remote travel restrictions early

A program called Return to Country helped people from Katherine return to their communities back in March. Picture: Tom Danks.
A program called Return to Country helped people from Katherine return to their communities back in March. Picture: Tom Danks.

There is a growing push to lift travel restrictions to NT remote communities early.

The biosecurity restrictions across the Territory were intended to be reviewed on June 18 but now the NT Government is indicating they may be lifted on June 5.

Chief Minister Michael Gunner yesterday said travel restrictions to remote Indigenous communities may be lifted early.

"Because we are safe, and because we have strict border controls for the NT, we can look at bringing forward the date for the Biosecurity Act restrictions," he said.

Mr Gunner said land councils had asked him this week to consider the move.

But the border controls would have to stay in place.

The Federal Government imposed the biosecurity regulations and would need to be the one to lift them.

Those regulations were varied earlier last month to clear the way for Mataranka residents to access Katherine.

Currently there is a 14-day isolation period for residents wanting to return home from regional centres after many took part in a "return to country" program in March.

Mr Gunner has indicated he would now approach the Federal Government about the idea.

This story Growing push to lift remote travel restrictions early first appeared on Katherine Times.