AOC slams SA's 28-day Olympian quarantine

1 month ago 13
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The Australian Olympic Committee has slammed the South Australian government for a "cruel" decision to subject returning Olympians to a 28-day quarantine.

Currently, the rules of entry into South Australia state that people arriving from NSW must complete a 14-day quarantine upon entering the state.

Of the returning 56 South Australian athletes, 16 are quarantined in Sydney after touching down in the harbour city.

But under the South Australian government's current protocols they would be forced into another 14-day quarantine upon returning to their home state.

AOC Chief Executive Officer Matt Carroll. (Getty)

AOC Chief Executive Officer Matt Carroll says the decision flies in the face of the expert medical advice and neglects the mental health of athletes, which may be severely challenged after returning from a highly constrained Tokyo Games environment.

"While other countries are celebrating the return of their athletes, we are subjecting ours to the most cruel and uncaring treatment. They are being punished for proudly representing their country with distinction at the Olympic Games," Carroll said.

"We are all promoting the obvious benefits of vaccination, but this important layer of protection is not working in favour of these athletes, given this decision. By any measure, this group of returning Olympians is extremely low risk.

"Not only are our Olympians fully vaccinated, but they have also been living in a highly controlled bubble in Tokyo, taking the upmost precautions – tested daily over many weeks."

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Carroll said the AOC had expressly followed the South Australian Health Department's Exemption process but had so far been knocked back.

"We have received no explanation as to why our application on behalf of these athletes has been rejected," he said.

"If you run an exemption process, presumably that includes the prospect than exemptions can be granted based on scientific advice. We have received no response related to the expert advice we have provided."

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