Message from the Hon Nola Marino MP – Thank you Christmas Island

Dear Christmas Island (CI) residents,

On behalf of the Australian Government, I extend you my warmest thanks and acknowledgement for your role in assisting your fellow Australians to return home from Wuhan safely amid the threat of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

The Australian Government’s response was swift and multi-faceted, with a range of agencies, led by the Australian Border Force, and including the Australian Federal Police, Australian Defence Force and AUSMAT (Australian Medical Assistance Team) working with the Departments of Health, Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Home Affairs, to bring these vulnerable Australians home.

The CI community spirit which the evacuees, and the medical and support staff witnessed, is a credit to each and every one of you. To those impacted by this global health emergency, Christmas Island offered a safe haven during their quarantine period.  

I would like to acknowledge the leadership of the Administrator of CI, Mrs Natasha Griggs, her staff and also the staff of the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications (the Department), which administers services to the local community on CI.

As part of the CI community, the Department’s cohort of local staff at the Indian Ocean Territories Administration (IOTA), as well as staff in Perth, and Canberra, worked alongside their Australian Government colleagues to ensure no impact on local services was experienced during this time, and to keep you informed. 

Thank you to our local CI Maintenance Services workforce, the contractors at Christmas Island Airport, staff at the IOT Health Service, to the teachers and students at Christmas Island District High School, and to everyone who made this experience a little bit easier and brighter for everyone.

While the quarantine period for the two groups of evacuees accommodated on Christmas Island has finished and they are now home, their memories of your kindness remain.

Your caring support, community spirit and unique natural environment has been showcased across the nation, and around the world.