Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says the government’s decision, guided by expert health advice, to move the city to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 from 11.59pm on Tuesday will be a relief for Aucklanders who have done their bit to keep New Zealanders safe.
“Level 3 provides some limited extra freedoms to Aucklanders and will allow some businesses such as the construction industries to restart operations as well as click-and-collect from retail and hospitality industries,” he says.
“However, we must not become complacent. As long as COVID-19 remains in the community we are still at high risk. We must stay the course and follow the Alert Level 3 rules that will help keep us safe.
“Following the guidelines, as well as getting vaccinated in large numbers, has helped reduce transmission and enabled us to move down alert levels. Moving further down the alert levels depends on us keeping up this effort.
“Keeping vaccination numbers high is critical. We are fast approaching 80 per cent of Aucklanders getting their first dose. We need to maintain this momentum and seek to vaccinate the maximum number of Aucklanders to reduce the chance of COVID being a risk to people’s wellbeing.
“There are still around 300,000 Aucklanders needing to get their first vaccination and making strong inroads into providing the opportunity and encouragement for them to get vaccinated is the best insurance policy against having further lockdowns.
“If you have not yet been vaccinated, make it a priority this week. Please continue to self-isolate and get a test if you have any COVID-19 symptoms. Wear a mask when using public transport or accessing essential services and wash your hands frequently.
“I want to thank Aucklanders for the hard work they’ve put in so far. Continue to look out for one another. I know this has been a difficult time, but we can get through it if we keep working together.”