COVID-19 Update, 28 January 2022
28 January 2022
To subscribe to our COVID-19 Update mailing list, please email [email protected] and we will subscribe you.
If you would like to share any gaps or issues affecting your organisation, or any services that require increased funding to meet an immediate need in the COVID-19 response, please get in touch with ACTCOSS through our general email address [email protected] or email someone from the team.
Our COVID-19 Update will be issued as new information emerges.
[New!] NGO FAQs: The ACT Government has gathered questions from NGOs about the current COVID-19 situation. Weblinks in response to questions are included. Read the NGO FAQs – 25 January 2022 (pdf) | (docx).
[New!] If community sector organisations have queries about COVID-19, please email [email protected]. The team will aim to address your questions as promptly as possible. Please note that ACT Health is managing a high number of cases at this time.
[New!] The ACT Government is taking a flexible and understanding approach to contract deliverables during COVID-19. If you need support, please contact your Relationship Manager at [email protected] for the Community Services Directorate or [email protected] for ACT Health. Reporting requirements have been deferred for all providers for the time being. Payments will not be affected. For organisations funded by other directorates, please contact your funding manager and reach out to ACTCOSS if you require support.
[New!] The ACT Government will soon release a tool to support workplaces that have been notified that an employee with COVID-19 has attend the workplace during their infectious period. Please monitor your emails for this update from ACT Health.
[New!] Requests for PPE can be lodged through the completion of the Distribution of Personal Protective Equipment online request form. Any questions or enquiries may be sent to the Community Services Directorate at [email protected].
[New!] ACT Government has produced a simple factsheet for students and families who have to quarantine (pdf).
[New!] Priority COVID-19 booster vaccination appointments are available for health care, aged care and disability care workers and community service support workers including roles such as clinical, support workers, kitchen, administration, security, or cleaning, as well as volunteers. For information on how to make an appointment please contact [email protected].
[New!] WWVP: Given the current challenges with workforce, some organisations and workers are experiencing delays in receiving WWVP registration. Please encourage colleagues to make their application for renewals of WWVP in a timely way. ACTCOSS has been provided with an email contact for organisations if you have any urgent and outstanding WWVP registration applications. Please contact [email protected] or [email protected] if you would like to receive the ACT Government contact for urgent applications or to provide a list of urgent applications that ACTCOSS can forward to Access Canberra.
[New!] The ACT Government has announced that it will be allocating 25,000 free RATs to in home disability support and aged care workers weekly. More information about this is expected over the next few days.
ACTCOSS COVID-19 Advocacy
[New!] ACTCOSS has been advocating on behalf of community organisations and people experiencing disadvantage during this COVID-19 pandemic period through the following:
- Wrote to the ACT Government (pdf) to highlight the importance of community sector access to rapid antigen testing (RATs), to request information on the likely delivery date of RATs and a clear outline of how the ACT Government will prioritise the distribution of RATs. We’ve also highlighted increased client demand and high costs of PPE
- Provided feedback on the ACT Government Workforce COVID-19 Exposure Assessment Tool
- Requested to extend the priority booster vaccination program to include health and community service sector
- Met with Chief Minister’s Office to emphasise importance of prioritising ACT community sector in access to ACT Government RAT supply
- Met with ACT Corrections Commissioner on ongoing response to COVID-19 in the Alexander Maconochie Centre
- Requested ACT Health to develop guidelines for use of RATs in health and community service sector settings
- Ongoing media commentary calling for universal access to RATs and priority access for health and community services sector workforce and consumers
- ACTCOSS is also working closely with ACOSS to:
- challenge the federal government’s cut to pandemic leave
- call for a COVID Rapid Response Group that includes representatives from the community sector alongside unions, business peaks and public health experts, and
- immediately suspend mutual obligations to reduce COVID risk.
ACTCOSS Meeting with Members and Peaks on COVID-19: If you are a member of ACTCOSS or an ACT peak body for the community sector, you are welcome to attend our weekly COVID-19 online meetings. Please email [email protected] for more information.
NDIS – 1800 800 110 and press 5: For escalating COVID-related plan review requests.
ACT COVID-19 Helpline – 02 6207 7244: 8am-8pm daily. Or visit the ACT Government’s COVID-19 website.
Disability Information Helpline – 1800 643 787: Mon-Fri 8am-8pm, Sat-Sun 9am-7pm. The Australian Government has established a Disability Information Helpline. The helpline is not available on national public holidays.
National COVID-19 vaccine helpline – 1800 020 080: This line operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Emergency relief and financial support
Emergency relief information guides: Volunteering ACT Community Info Hub have created useful information guides listing resources including free meals, laundry and showers, as well as emergency relief services. Find the latest emergency relief guides here.
Emergency Food Relief – call 1800 43 11 33, 9am-5pm: The ACT Government has partnered with VolunteeringACT and the State Emergency Service (SES) to provide emergency food relief to those in need. Any Canberran who is significantly and adversely impacted by the lockdown and is unable to feed their family is encouraged to call. The ACT Government has also provided information on priority grocery assistance for vulnerable people who require assistance with grocery delivery.
Selected ACT Government Updates
How to contact CSD: The ACT Community Services Directorate has set up a branch to respond to the COVID-19 situation. Outside of existing engagement, networks or contacts with relationship managers, you can contact CSD via CSD’s [email protected] inbox. Organisations can send their COVID-19 queries to this email if they need advice or have any questions.
COVID-19 info and health
- ACT Health information on COVID-19 in other languages
- Easy read resources on COVID-19 by ACT Government, to make sure everyone can understand the basics
- ACT Health information on how to access mental health and wellbeing support during COVID-19
- ACT Government information on support for people on temporary visas
- Information from the Community Services Directorate on services for Canberrans needing support during COVID-19
- [New!] ACT Government signs and factsheets – COVID-19
- [New!] I have COVID-19 – What do I do? (pdf) – Easy English resource from Advocacy for Inclusion
- Easy English COVID Words (pdf) by Advocacy for Inclusion
- Mask Exemption for People with Hearing Loss exemption resource: The ACT Deafness Resource Centre has created an image than you can download mask exemption image on your phone or print out (pdf).