10 September 2021
While countries like the UK and the US were busy signing vaccine supply deals with Pfizer in July 2020, the Morrison Government ignored Pfizer’s request for urgent meetings.
Freedom of Information documents obtained by Labor confirm the facts:
- In June 2020, Pfizer first wrote to the Morrison Government about vaccine supply, not the other way around.
- In the weeks that followed, the Government rejected a Pfizer offer to meet with the Health Minister.
- The Government rejected an offer to meet with senior members of Pfizer global leadership – leaving it up to the health department to have an introductory meeting with Pfizer Australia.
- Pfizer made clear it wanted to move quickly and said it had the potential to supply millions of doses in 2020.
The vaccine rollout was always a race, but Australia started a lap behind because the Morrison Government took a deliberate “wait and see” approach to vaccine deals.
Australia was never at the “front of the queue” as Scott Morrison claimed. Our vaccine supply deals with Pfizer weren’t signed until Christmas Eve.
Australians are now paying the price for this failure - we have more people in lockdown and fewer people fully vaccinated than any other developed country.
To get through this pandemic, we urgently need access to more vaccines. Many in our community are still waiting for their appointments. Parents who can’t arrange child care are forced to choose between visiting mass vaccination hubs with their kids in tow – potentially exposing them to COVID – or delaying their vaccination. And more and more children are testing positive to COVID every day.
That’s why I’m demanding that walk-in vaccination hubs be set up in the Parramatta CBD and surrounding suburbs so that everyone has an opportunity to be vaccinated.
If you think our state and federal governments should stop blaming Western Sydney and start working together to set up walk-in vaccine clinics in Parramatta visit: https://julieowens.com.au/vaccinehubsnow