The Victorian State of Emergency (SOE) is due to expire on the 15th of December 2021.
There is a lot of confusion in the community at the moment, because the current state of emergency powers are set to ‘run out’ on the 21st of October 2021.
But the thing is, the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 (PHWA) (Section 198 (7) (c)) allows for the SOE to be ‘extended’ every four weeks, which it has been doing ever since March 2020.
The 15th of December 2021 is the very last date that the SOE can be extended to (on a 4-weekly, by 4-weekly basis). This is the date we need to worry about, because there is nothing you can do now (in terms of advocating cross benchers) to ask them not to allow the extension from the 21st of October – it is not something they control.
The Minister for Health ‘on the advice of the Chief Health Officer’ makes the decision to extend the SOE every four weeks. It is not a vote made in Parliament, it is not something that can be petitioned against, it just happens, and we are in this cycle of constant SOE extension because of three politicians who gave Daniel Andrews the power to amend the PHWA back in September 2020, to allow for these ongoing extensions.
Those members were Samantha Ratnam (Victorian Greens Party), Andy Meddick, (Animal Justice Party), and Fiona Patten (Fiona Patten Reason party).
These three members of Parliament will be the same three members Daniel Andrews will need again come the 15th of December. These three members are the reason Daniel Andrews has the SOE powers now, the reason he can issue mandates, the reason he can tell you who can go to work and who can’t, the reason why he can tell you if you don’t get the jab you don’t get to work, and the reason why your life is being controlled by the government of the day.
As the 15th of December date looms, to continue any mandates or directions Parliament either need to change legislation (meaning another amendment to the Public Health and Wellbeing Act like they did in September 2020) or they need to create new legislation to give them ongoing powers – (there is rumour that Daniel Andrews is trying to bring in a new piece of legislation to work around constantly extending a SOE).
Either of those things require a vote – it has to be passed through Parliament – and this is where you have the opportunity to engage the cross benchers who have the ultimate power to let this happen, or free our State.