ADF backs COVID Safety Operation in Bourke


Bourke Police and members of the Australian Defence Force in formation at North Bourke last week. PHOTO TWH

Australian Defence Force personnel are in Bourke and other areas of the western region to play a significant role in Operation Covid Assist.

The operation covers all states and territories but has been particularly active in NSW, with Greater Sydney and the regions seeing police and ADF personnel working together, to enforce public health compliance and to provide vaccinations and support the welfare and well-being of communities.

Colonel Warwick Young is the NSW Commander of Operation Covid Assist, and heads vaccination outreach teams as part of the whole of government response to the pandemic.

“We currently have operations in Wilcannia and Bourke, as well as Sydney and regional NSW,” Colonel Young said.

“We have large contingent based out of Dubbo working in Bourke and many other regional centres in western NSW.

“We have about 70 vaccination personnel, and they have five teams moving around different locations to deliver vaccinations, especially remote and indigenous communities.

“We also have a group of 100 soldiers, sailors and airmen assisting police with well-being checks and making sure people are doing the right thing, and we bring aid to communities wherever we can as well,” he said.


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Operation COVID Assist is being led in Bourke by Inspector Jeff Little and Lieutenant Stephen Petrie. PHOTO TWH