Western Sydney mayor blows up about city's lockdown

Western Sydney mayor blows up about city's lockdown
Western Sydney mayor blows up about city's lockdown

A furious mayor in Sydney's west has let loose over the city's stifling lockdown saying his residents are completely fed-up and many will not recover. 

Steve Christou, the mayor of Cumberland Council, said the announcement of another four weeks of lockdown on Wednesday was the 'point of no return' for his residents. 

'For many, it's like Armageddon. This economically crippling lockdown will have effects for years,' he said in a statement. 

A Covid testing facility at Auburn (pictured) in Cumberland LGA, one of the poorest areas in NSW

A Covid testing facility at Auburn (pictured) in Cumberland LGA, one of the poorest areas in NSW

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Cumberland Mayor Steve Christou (pictured) said his residents are struggling to get through Sydney's 'crippling' lockdown

Cumberland Mayor Steve Christou (pictured) said his residents are struggling to get through Sydney's 'crippling' lockdown 

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said on Wednesday stay-at-home orders would be extended for another month across Sydney and surrounding regions - with even harsher restrictions in place for eight specific local government areas in the west. 

Residents of Parramatta, Georges River and Campbelltown Councils will from Thursday join those in Cumberland, Fairfield, Canterbury-Bankstown, and Blacktown who cannot leave their LGA unless they are an essential worker. 

Mr Christou said Cumberland - already one of the poorest areas in the state - was suffering the brunt of the restrictions. 

Many residents have contacted him directly to say they are being ruined financially and the lockdown is 'wreaking havoc' on their mental health. 

'Families are struggling to pay mortgages, rent, and put food on the table,' he said. 

'They have struggled through the first four, five weeks of this only to be told they will be burdened with another four weeks.' 

Residents in Auburn in the Cumberland local government line up at a vaccination facility

Residents in Auburn in the Cumberland local government line up at a vaccination facility 

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Mr Christou said families in his LGA are struggling to pay rent (pictured)

Mr Christou said families in his LGA are struggling to pay rent (pictured) 

Construction will also remain suspended in the eight LGAs - with Mr Christou saying Cumberland's more than 10,000 tradies were being hit especially hard despite little evidence the construction industry was a source for spreading the virus. 

He also took aim at state MPs he claimed were were 'tucked at home in their loungerooms and not doing the heavy lifting they've demanded of us'. 

He added the government's vaccine rollout had also failed his constituents as the country has 'no resolution other than lockdown' 19 months after the virus first hit Australia.

After offering numerous 'well-staffed' community facilities to the state government with just the 'nurses and jabs' needed to turn them into vaccination centres, Mr Chrsitou said he had heard nothing back from authorities. 

'Only this week NSW Health have setup five clinics in our area administering only 1,500 jabs between them. While I welcome them it's well short of what we need.' 

NSW recorded 239 new local cases on Thursday, the highest number for the state since the pandemic began.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has raised expectations lockdowns will not be needed next year if all Australians are offered coronavirus vaccines.

How to claim the $600 lockdown payment if you lose work 

Sydney residents who lose more than 20 hours of work a week can claim a $600 disaster payment from the federal government, and those who lose less than 20 hours can claim $375. 

To claim the cash you'll need a Centrelink online account linked to your myGov. It's easy to set these up.

Once you're logged in, you will be asked a few questions about your situation to see if you're eligible.

Officials need to know if you lived or worked in a Covid-19 hotspot that's under lockdown or restricted movement.

Once you've completed your claim, hit submit and officials will process it for you.

You don't need to call them, they'll send you an SMS when you successfully submit your claim.

If you are eligible, officials will make a payment into your bank account and send you a letter with the details.

For more information click here 

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The prime minister believes all people who want a jab will have the chance to receive one by year's end, barring unforeseen circumstances.

'I would expect by Christmas we will be seeing a very different Australia to what we're seeing now,' he told reporters in Canberra.

Around 17 per cent of Australians aged 16 and over have been fully vaccinated, leaving the nation well behind similar countries five months into the rollout.

But Mr Morrison is increasingly confident as vaccination administrations reach around one million doses a week.

The prime minister said immunisation offered governments more options despite his earlier warnings about countries with

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