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‘This is a health crisis’: Neil Mitchell criticises handling of Cedar Meats COVID-19 cluster

As another 13 cases of coronavirus were today linked with the outbreak at Cedar Meats, Neil Mitchell criticised the way the cluster was handled.

Today’s cases bring the total number of COVID-19 cases attributed to the abattoir to 62.

Health Minister Jenny Mikakos says the outbreak was “handled absolutely perfectly”, but Neil Mitchell disagrees.

“This hasn’t been handled well by any definition,” the 3AW Mornings host said.

“Pretending that it has … means we’re less likely to learn from the mistakes.

“These sort of outbreaks are going to be the new normal. We’ve got to live with them, we’ve got to manage them as well as we can, which means better than this one.

“Pretending it was perfect is just garbage.”

It comes amid revelations Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud pushed for tougher health regulations in meat processing facilities in March, as the pandemic loomed.

“I’ve raised it at every agricultural ministers’ meeting … that we needed to adhere and adopt … protocols around any outbreak in an abattoir,” Mr Littleproud told Neil Mitchell.

“I’ve written to all of the state ministers is March/April.

“Unfortunately only two states formally replied to me, and that is the ACT and Tasmania.

“We’re not looking for recriminations … these are just about learnings.”

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