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Australia ‘This is imprisonment': Blacktown apartment in lockdown after COVID outbreak

03:55  27 july  2021
03:55  27 july  2021 Source:   smh.com.au

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Cleaners in HAZMAT suits arrive a lock downed apartment building at Devitt Street in the south western suburb of Blacktown in Sydney, Tuesday, July 27, 2021. © AAP Image/Mick Tsikas Cleaners in HAZMAT suits arrive a lock downed apartment building at Devitt Street in the south western suburb of Blacktown in Sydney, Tuesday, July 27, 2021.

A Blacktown apartment complex has been forced into lockdown after several residents tested positive to COVID-19.

The unit block, owned by community housing provider Evolve Housing, is now under police guard and all residents have been tested.

Police arrived at the unit block of 50 units overnight Tuesday following a request from health authorities

Some residents who spoke to the Herald on Tuesday morning had returned negative tests while others were still awaiting results.

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Resident Thayaparan Sivagnanasundaram was told on Monday that one person had tested positive but more cases have since emerged.

He lives in a two-bedroom apartment with his wife and three children. The entire family have returned negative test results.

"It is hard and stressful but of course we have to do it and follow the rules," he said.

"Yesterday they came and we got tested. This morning I got the results and my whole family are negative.

"The children are happy but asking if they can go out to the playground but I explained to them what's going on."

Mr Sivagnanasundaram, who now cannot work, said the family will have to be tested again on August 2 and August 7.

Another resident, who asked not to be named, said tenants had received limited information from authorities about the situation.

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The man, who works as a nurse and is fully vaccinated, said he was angry at the state and federal governments for failing to get the outbreak under control and vaccinations administered.

"I think this government is in shambles, they need to be voted out because they don't know what they're doing. They don't seem to care about people," he said.

"If the politicians had their heads in the right places they wouldn't be playing with our lives and livelihoods.

"This is imprisonment."

The resident said he called NSW Health to see if there were any exceptions for healthcare workers but could not get hold of anyone.

Blacktown, in the west of Sydney, is one of five local government areas of concern where non-essential workers are banned from leaving the locality for work. There are 93 confirmed cases in the LGA.

NSW Health has been contacted for comment.

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