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Time to come together and prepare

Wednesday 8 December 2021

Mayor Rehette Stoltz says with confirmed cases of COVID-19 expected in Tairāwhiti soon, it’s important the community knows what to expect and that systems and processes are in place to support each other.

This includes making sure whānau have everything needed in case a family member contracts COVID-19 and needs to self-isolate.

Two positive wastewater samples were confirmed in Gisborne last week and Wairoa confirmed two positive cases of COVID-19 on Friday. Although the cases are low-risk, the news came as a reminder that we need to prepare for when the virus emerges in our Tairāwhiti community.

“Over the past few weeks the topic of vaccination has been discussed and analysed at length.  It’s created lively discussion and debate at work and around the family dinner table,” says Mayor Stoltz.

“We’ve all had to make some really hard decisions, but regardless of what perspective we have, we must support each other through the times ahead.

“While we still need to focus on vaccinations, we also need to consider what we do if someone in our community contracts COVID-19.

“The new approach is to isolate at home, so I’m urging whānau to work together to think about a plan in case a family member needs to self-isolate.

“With Auckland borders opening next week, I want us to be prepared for any possibility.

“To prepare for home isolation, families must think about sleeping arrangements, food, water, medicine and any specific needs someone may have.

“Our local health providers, hapū and Council area liaison staff have been working to prepare for when the time comes and I’m proud of the work that’s been done so far to keep whānau safe.

Ministry of Health guidelines state that family members can’t come within 2m of any infected person, can’t sleep in the same bedroom and the whare needs to be well ventilated.

“Kia kaha whānau, this is when the strength of our community working together shines through.”

For more information on self-isolating at home, see