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Wed, 13 Jan, 2021

"We don't have a choice": Jacqui Lambie's detention centre push

"We don't have a choice": Jacqui Lambie's detention centre push

Tasmania Senator Jacqui Lambie has made a controversial call to send returned overseas travellers to Christmas Island for quarantine.

She says that officials "have no other choice" to deal with the infectious UK COVID strain, saying that the current system doesn't work.

"Those in power in Canberra don't have any other choice. We have a new strain running around now. Lot more contagious. We have to lift the bar," Ms Lambie told Today.

"We have empty detention centres, (I) don't give a stuff if it's Christmas Island. If you're an overseas traveller coming home, and we have to get a little bit hardcore for you for the safety of everybody else in the country and that means you have to stay in these places, so be it.

"If that means we can also get more home in quicker time than we owe it to Australians to do that".

She also urged Prime Minister Scott Morriston to develop a coordinated national response to COVID.

"We have a new strain running around now. Lot more contagious. We have to lift the bar. We don't have a choice," she said.

"What I'd like to see is some leadership over this whole COVID stuff from Scott Morrison.

"We let the state leaders and premiers work this out and I have to be honest with they've done a good job, but it's about time the Commonwealth stood up and started actually taking lock stock and barrel of this.

"Get them in those camps. Get them in those detention centres so we can get them back to daily lives and back in the country and get them working."

Many on Facebook agreed with Lambie's comments.

"Christmas Island is better alternative than being quarantined in a hotel room for two weeks! Even criminals in gaol get daily outdoor exercise," one agreed.

"They should have been doing this from the start. Hotel quarantine clearly isn't working," another said.