NZ Politics Daily: 25 January 2022

NZ Politics Daily: 25 January 2022

Govt Omicron strategy, NZ moves to red traffic light setting
Chris Trotter (Interest): Omicron has come
Peter Dunne (Newsroom): Return to red light shows a lack of New Year resolve
Matthew Hooton (Patreon): Why Omicron is more likely to kill you than Delta (paywalled)
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Newstalk ZB): We’re starting this year with the same problem we’ve had for the past two
Liam Hehir (Patreon): The end of the Phoney War (paywalled)
Michael Reddell (Croaking Cassandra): To what end?
Verity Johnson (Stuff): Young, vaccinated and over the Covid-19 pandemic
Jamie Morton (Herald): Covid 19: How did this Omicron outbreak start? (paywalled)
RNZ: ‘No silver bullet against Omicron’, expect large numbers – Chris Hipkins
1 News: Daily Omicron cases could number tens of thousands – Hipkins
Herald: Melbourne epidemiologist says NZ will ‘easily’ see a hundred thousand cases
RNZ: New Zealand needs to keep Delta levels low to prevent double epidemic with Omicron – epidemiologist
William Hewett (Newshub): Professor Michael Baker warns Kiwis should expect to get Omicron or know someone who gets it
Emme McKay (Herald): New Zealand must learn from our Omicron mistakes, warns Aussie epidemiologist
Monika Barton (Newshub): Jay-Jay Feeney, Hollie Smith, Guy Williams and more react to move to red setting
Ben Kepes (Stuff): Time to cool it on criticism of ‘socialist’ Covid-19 response
Herald Editorial: Out of summer haze into stark reality (paywalled)
Ireland Hendry-Tennent (Newshub): Piers Morgan criticises Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern over move to red traffic light setting
Ben Graham ( World reacts to New Zealand’s Covid crackdown over nine cases
Kate Schneider ( Bin fire’: TV presenter condemns Australia, praises NZ’s Omicron response
Spinoff: So you’ve come into contact with omicron
Lynn McBain (Newsroom): How to manage a Covid infection
Ireland Hendry-Tennent (Newshub): Runny nose, headache and fatigue tell-tale signs of Omicron infection

Masks, PPE, Antiviral medications
RNZ: Antiviral medications may not be available until after Omicron peak
RNZ: Call for widespread use of N95 masks to combat Omicron
Kristin Hall (1 News): Expert calls for free N95 masks as retailers sell out
Marine Lourens (Stuff): Approved respirators most effective against Omicron – but are they affordable?
Ella Stewart (RNZ): New Zealand scientists develop system to disinfect PPE

Health system braces
RNZ: NZ health system ‘not prepared’ for Omicron – Healthcare figures
Nita Blake-Persen (RNZ): Emergency services warn Omicron will make staff shortages worse
Nicole Bremner (1 News): Middlemore Hospital staff confident it will cope with Omicron
Emma Russell (Herald): Hospital workers need to be diverted to general practices, says GP leader
Louisa Steyl (Stuff): Southern DHB staff call on patients to drive telehealth roll out

Vulnerable populations
Rawiri Taonui (Māori TV): The Omicron risk for Māori
Olivia Shivas (Stuff): Concern for NZ disabled community, support workers after modelling predicts wide spread of Omicron
Glenn McConnell (Stuff): Covid-19 booster shots should be given to immunocompromised teens, vaccine expert says
Cate Broughton (Stuff): Older, vulnerable Kiwis urged to ‘hunker down’ when Omicron cases peak

Cases, locations of interest
Newshub: As it happened: Latest on COVID-19 community outbreak – Monday, January 24
1 News: Eight new Omicron community cases in NZ today
1 News: Additional case, second household in Nelson Covid outbreak
Kurt Bayer (Herald): Isolating Motueka family says they are ‘all good’
Conor Whitten (Newshub): Motueka sees increased demand for testing, vaccinations as two more Omicron cases found locally
RNZ: Kitchen worker at Auckland rest home believed to have Omicron
Anne Gibson (Herald): Summerset Group’s Flat Bush village replaces all kitchen staff after finding link to wedding (paywalled)
RNZ: List of Auckland Omicron-related locations of interest grows
Herald: Auckland hotel, Rainbow’s End theme park and community hall named

Border, MIQ, Testing
Adam Pearse (Herald): Auckland testing demand low as vaccinations spike after outbreak
1 News: Unlinked Covid cases now priority in genome sequencing
John Weekes (Herald): New sequencing weapon to pinpoint cases shows promise, but has limits
Dileepa Fonseka (Stuff): Why lab testing capacity during Omicron will be much lower than 40,000 tests a day
Amanda Cropp (Stuff): Covid-19 testing labs will soon be ‘overrun’ as Omicron spreads, workers warn
RNZ: Checkpoint: Lack of rapid antigen tests disappointing – Business NZ boss
Herald: Quarantine-free travel to Cook Islands to stay open

Economy, Business, Employment
Jordan Bond (RNZ): Industries warn of expected shortages due to close contact isolation rules
Aimee Shaw (Herald): Gloom looms over capabilities of NZ’s grocery supply chains (paywalled)
Anne Gibson (Herald): Businesses respond to red alert, many workers told to stay home
Andy Brew (Stuff): Wine grower highlights major concern for harvest in red
Jo Lines-MacKenzie and Aaron Leaman (Stuff): Workers split up to keep the water flowing and power on as Omicron nears
RNZ: Plea for more government support for businesses worst-hit by Omicron
John Weekes (Herald): ‘Shadow lockdown’ worries as Wellington leaders prepare for CBD slowdown
Giles Dexter (Newshub): Event production crews cry out for targeted support as they face weeks without work
1 News: Countdown staff preparing for ‘brutal’ Omicron period
RNZ: ‘Don’t go overboard, you don’t need a trolley of toilet paper’ – Countdown spokesperson
Herald: Would NZ run out of toilet paper? Supply chain expert responds
Andrea Fox (Herald): Panic buying will impact grocery stocks more than Omicron absenteeism: logistics bosses (paywalled)
Caitlan Johnston (Herald):Shoppers snap up stock of medicines including Panadol, ibuprofen
Esther Taunton (Stuff): What happens to supply chains if Kiwis ‘stock up a bit’?
Oscar Francis (ODT): People urged to shop normally, safely and with kindness
Emily Brookes (Stuff): Big city bars brace for Omicron losses, say Covid ‘fear factor’ will hurt business even after red
Grant Bradley (Herald): Financially wounded businesses now facing the ‘big sick’ (paywalled)
Jamie Mackay (Herald):  ‘Red’ light not a death knell for exploring New Zealand (paywalled)
RNZ: NZ sharemarket rallies but still finishes on eight-month low
Andrew Patterson (Newsroom): Omicron outbreak adds to woeful start for financial markets
Brianna Mcilraith (Stuff): Inflation expected to reach the highest level in 31 years, so what will cost more in 2022?
Mark Fowler (Herald):  Further rate rises could lead to unexpected outcomes (paywalled)
Uma Ahmed (Stuff): Hospitality industry shake-up in Southland
Rebecca Macfie (North & South): Bad Jobs
Mike Yardley (Stuff): NZ’s official jobless figures are ‘abject nonsense’

Tina Law, Piers Fuller and Mikaela Wilkes (Stuff): All the events cancelled or up in the air as Omicron hits NZ 
Kim Moodie (RNZ): Omicron in community: Shift to red traffic light setting disrupts plans for some major events
ODT: Red light stymies Warbirds, other events
RNZ: Blow for businesses as Warbirds over Wanaka called off again
Māori TV: Red light puts stop to Waitangi celebrations in Manukau
Jennifer Eder (Stuff): Waihopai Spy Base protest cancelled as NZ moves into red
Māori TV: National Māori basketball champs axed amid Omicron
Maxine Jacobs (Stuff): Rātana celebrations to be livestreamed to members as Omicron threat grows

Vaccination, Vaccine Pass
Katie Todd (RNZ): More than 1m booster doses given, experts push for urgency amid Omicron
Logan Church (1 News): ‘Race’ is on to boost more Kiwis before they catch Omicron
Oliver Lewis (BusinessDesk): Millions missing out on booster protection (paywalled)
Te Rina Kowhai (Newshub): Slow start to vaccine drive and frontline staff fatigue impacting booster rollout for Māori – health experts
Justin Latif (Local Democracy Project): ‘We’re here if you need us’: Manurewa marae gets South Auckland boosted
Tamati Tiananga (Māori TV): Hāhī Rātana members get vaccinated as Omicron hits Tāmaki
Matthew Martin (Stuff): Lakes DHB hits 90 per cent vaccine milestone
University of Auckland: NZ hosts vaccine safety project
Dylan Reeve (Spinoff): No, five kids didn’t collapse at a vaccination site. So who said they did?
William Hewett (Newshub): Canterbury District Health Board denies anti-vaxxers’ claims child collapsed in Rangiora after COVID vaccine
John Anthony (Stuff): Jetstar passengers must show Covid-19 vaccine pass or negative test result before boarding
Herald: WorkSafe takes enforcement action against Lone Star New Lynn for allegedly breaching vaccine mandate

Parliament, parties
Ian Powell (Political Bytes): Should Greens ditch cooperative agreement with Labour?
Taylor Rice (Herald): How 2022 will define the next General Election (paywalled)
Michele Hewitson (Listener/Herald): National Party deputy leader Nicola Willis: Prime minister in waiting?(paywalled)

RNZ: Checkpoint: Schools prepare for new year in red restrictions
James Perry (Māori TV): Back to school but with a difference under Red Light rules
Northern Advocate (Herald):  Northland principal on education at red: ‘If parents and teachers use commonsense, then we’ll get through’ (paywalled)
Anna Bracewell-Worrall (Newshub): Return to classrooms could bring challenges for parents and schools as Omicron looms
Eric Trump (ODT): Tertiary teaching keyed into Red traffic light settings
Karanama Ruru (Stuff): University of Auckland to move exams online in 2022, regardless of Covid-19 rules

Greg Ninness (Interest): Rising interest rates mean lower house prices may not bring much relief to hopeful first home buyers
Herald: ‘Disgusting’: Auckland homeless mocked, taunted in viral video
Cate Broughton (Stuff): Man who feared for safety in emergency housing advised to carry a bat by MSD staff

Tonga volcanic eruption, tsunami
RNZ: Auckland Tonga collection looking to other parts of NZ
Andrew Marshall (ODT): Dunedin food drive chance to show support for Tonga
RNZ: Cleanup and rebuild in Tonga prompts call for basic supplies
Sela Jane Hopgood (Spinoff): From Auckland to Nuku’alofa: The families sending aid and aroha to Tonga
RNZ: Tongan RSE workers told to ‘sit tight’, many still awaiting news from home

Local government
ODT: Councils determine new restrictions
Nikki Preston (Herald): Unvaccinated Waikato regional councillors could be given special treatment to attend council meetings
Stephen Ward (Stuff): Thames Coromandel’s no-Pfizer leader hits reality of being a stay-at home mayor
Skara Bohny (Stuff): Red alert level changes Nelson City Council rules
Grant Miller (ODT): Heritage carriages seen as drawcard
Jean Edwards (RNZ): Checkpoint: Frustration as Goughs Bay still cut off after slips
Todd Niall (Stuff): Auckland’s water woes are flushed away – but not for long 
Aaron Leaman (Stuff): Auckland urged to act as ‘good citizens’ of the Waikato River as water take doubles
Skara Bohny (Stuff): A year on and still no Pride crossing for Nelson
Lane Nichols (Herald): Auckland Council wins bid to appeal against Waiheke Island vineyard ‘chirping crickets’ noise case (paywalled)

William Hewett (Newshub): Public transport users furious at overcrowding as Auckland Transport defends decision to run reduced timetable despite Omicron outbreak
Simon Wilson (Herald):  Will the Auckland Light Rail decision be silly or smart? (paywalled)

Daniel Dunkley (BusinessDesk): The war over Tova
Edward Gay (Stuff): Tova O’Brien: Broadcaster must wait two months before beginning her new job
Herald: Tova O’Brien loses restraint of trade ERA case against former workplace Discovery

Jonathon Harper (Listener/Herald): Supreme test: What the Peter Ellis case tells us about justice in New Zealand (paywalled)
Jenny Ruth (BusinessDesk): A plea from a Facebook and Twitter refusenik (paywalled)
Isobel Prasad (1 News): Pasifika make up half of Auckland’s 2021 sudden infant deaths
Māori TV: ‘Tūtae in my letterbox’: The flak Sir Tipene O’Regan got for leading Waitangi settlement
Māori TV: ‘I don’t like boardroom politics’: Ex Ngāi Tahu chair Sir Mark Solomon
Noel Garcia (Northland Age): Grants prioritise vulnerable mātauranga Māori
John Boynton (Newshub): The Hui: Taranaki’s rugged coastline will be forever changed in years to come as erosion and rising sea levels take their toll