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Only a few weeks ago, local people were crying out for the tourists to return to the South Coast after the devastating impact of the fires, but that call has once again been reversed as concerns over the spread of COVID-19 mount. 

With Easter fast approaching, Member for Gilmore, Fiona Phillips MP has called for tourists considering holidaying on the NSW South Coast to rethink that plan. This also means anyone who owns a holiday home and is planning to self-isolate away from their usual place of residence should simply stay put.

“Our community has been through so much over the last few months and I know it comes as a cruel blow to again be sending tourists away so soon,” Fiona Phillips said.

“But I cannot say this in strong enough terms – all tourists, holiday makers and other would-be travellers who do not normally call the South Coast home must stay away this Easter,”

“We need to make sure the health and wellbeing of our community comes first and while I would like to see harder and faster restrictions put in place to formally stop this, we all need to play our role in limiting exposure for ourselves and for others,” she said. 

The Gilmore MP said many local people have raised concerns about tourists visiting the area or choosing to self-isolate away from home, ignoring the Prime Minister’s warnings to avoid all non-essential travel.

While it might seem ideal to self-isolate on the beautiful South Coast, health services and other infrastructure are simply not set up to cope with that additional strain and this will place everyone – locals and travellers alike – at greater risk.

Mrs Phillips said the beach will still be waiting for you when the threat has abated and tourists should simply delay their trip until it is safe to do so.

“The South Coast will be waiting for you with open arms when the time is right,”

“Please, if you are thinking about coming to the South Coast – just stay home,” Fiona Phillips said.