While New Zealand is at Alert Level 4, we're making sure that New Zealanders are kept informed and up to date with all the latest developments of the Government's COVID-19 response. It's been a shortened week because of Easter, so we're bringing you our weekly wrap a day early.
At this week's post-Cabinet press conference, the Prime Minister announced that a list of all companies receiving the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy is now published and searchable online - you can access this list here.
She also took the time to make a very special announcement: the Easter Bunny (and the Tooth Fairy!) are considered essential workers. The Prime Minister put out a call to the kids of New Zealand to decorate their own Easter eggs and put them in their front windows so children in their neighbourhood can go on an Easter egg hunt! They were also encouraged to send their artwork to the Prime Minister - click here for just a small selection of the hundreds of submissions already received.
If you want to get involved, click here to download the Prime Minister's Easter egg and get colouring - use one of these other designs the Labour team have produced!
#LIVE Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speaks at this week's post-Cabinet press conferencePosted by Jacinda Ardern on Sunday, April 5, 2020
On Tuesday, the Government announced a range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19. This support includes the Getting through together campaign which shares ways to help Kiwis cope with the stress of COVID-19.
Getting through together also includes tools for parents, dubbed Sparklers at Home, which provides support for parents to talk with their primary-school aged children about their own mental health and wellbeing.
It’s important to remember that a lot of the usual places you may go to for support, like your doctor, are still available - it might just be a phone call or an online video link instead. Many employers provide mental health support for their staff, and the Government is looking at what additional support is needed for our health workforce.
Specific information and mental health support campaigns are also being designed for Māori, Pasifika, older people, people with chronic health conditions or compromised immunity and new mothers, as well as telephone support, app and online resources and support.
#LIVE Update on the COVID-19 responsePosted by Jacinda Ardern on Monday, April 6, 2020
The Prime Minister's press conference on Wednesday was extended to include the Education Minister, who announced that the Ministry of Education will be rolling out an extensive, four-channel package to provide at least one distance-learning option for all families by 15 April to support parents, learners and schools.
The Government has fast-tracked over $87.7 million to get devices to households in need and put in place TV channels with educational content in English and te reo Māori, so that students keep learning in lockdown. It’s a big and complex job, and it's being done quickly.
#LIVE Update on the COVID-19 responsePosted by Jacinda Ardern on Tuesday, April 7, 2020
Ahead of Good Friday, the Prime Minister took the opportunity in her daily press update to deliver an Easter address to the nation, marking the possible half-way point of the lockdown.
She also took the opportunity to announce that, from midnight Thursday, all returning New Zealand citizens will now be placed in managed self-isolation in a government-approved facility for 14 days. This will be mandatory for anyone entering the country in order to keep the virus out.
#LIVE Update on the COVID-19 responsePosted by Jacinda Ardern on Wednesday, April 8, 2020
As we head into Easter Weekend, please stay home and stay safe. Unfortunately, you can't physically go to church for Easter services this year - but there are online and broadcast options. All supermarkets will be closed on Good Friday, but some supermarkets will be open on Sunday. Check with your local store to confirm their hours.
Look out for the next edition in this series on Friday.
As of Thursday at 1pm, New Zealand reported 1,239 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 317 people now classified as recovered. We have 14 people in hospital and four in intensive care.
We're committed to keeping New Zealanders safe and well-informed every step of the way. We'll continue to share updates and developments of the Government's response to COVID-19.
Visit covid19.govt.nz for the latest information on COVID-19, including the alert levels, health, travel, education, business and community issues.
Head here for information on our Government's economic response – including wage subsidies, rent increase freezes and mortgage holidays.
COVID-19: If you are concerned about thecorona virus or feeling unwell, phone your doctor in the first instance. You can also call Healthline’s free dedicated COVID-19 number at 0800 358 5453 (or +64 9 358 5453 for international SIMS), for health advice. Find out more at covid19.govt.nz