An image has emerged which appears to contradict AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan’s claims players and their families who flew from Melbourne to Queensland are quarantining like the majority of Aussies.
Fans recently heard Queensland would host the first AFL Grand Final outside of Victoria, which sparked excitement within the state and praise for Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.
'OLD MATE IN THE BACKGROUND’: Golfer steals AFL presser
McLachlan reiterated AFL players, their families and the media were “doing this quarantine the same as everyone else”.
But excitement has waned over the announcement and has turned to confusion after an image, released on Channel Nine, appeared to contradict his statement after showing a huge swimming pool and a sunbathing area in the AFL players resort.
Furthermore, cases of people being rejected to enter quarantine while AFL teams are allowed exemptions has sparked claims of ‘double standards’ from Premier Palaszczuk.
The image follows Scott Emerson’s Sydney Morning Herald opinion piece where he pointed out the different standards set by the government when allowing people to cross the border.
He labelled the decision to allow 400 AFL members into Queensland, and the decision to reject medical emergencies as ‘perverse’.
“But it was perverse, rather than bizarre, to witness a legion of 400 Aussie Rules officials and their families fly into the Sunshine State this week and ensconce themselves in the AFL hub on the Gold Coast,” he wrote.
“Perverse because it followed a series of heartbreaking medical emergencies south of the Tweed where patients abandoned their attempts to cross the border to use Queensland hospitals.”
Trace Miller, a cancer patient, said she was ‘disgusted’ to hear how the AFL are being ushered through, while she hasn’t found it easy at all.
Miller, who lives in Moree in north-west NSW, claimed she applied to enter Queensland on August 12 to see her surgeon in Toowoomba on August 17.
But she claimed it was only granted on August 25, eight days after the appointment.
"That is like saying sports are okay, but the people who are in need of medical help don't have an option at all," she told Channel Nine.
AFL uproar prompts politician anger
McLachlan has reaffirmed the Health Department has signed off on the quarantine and the decision to host the AFL Grand Final in Queensland.
Palaszczuk also reaffirmed in a Tweet on Thursday that all AFL players will be required to quarantine for 14 days when entering Queensland.
But it hasn’t stopped politicians hitting out at Queensland Premier Palaszczuk.
Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said cases like Miller’s appear like “double standards”.
Nationals deputy David Littleproud slammed the standards as “abhorrent”.
“As a Queenslander I’m ashamed today when the Premier of Queensland can allow 400 AFL executives to swan around a resort in the Gold Coast but won’t allow teenage boarding school children to go home to see their parents in remote NSW. (It) is abhorrent, it’s wrong,” Littleproud said.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian sad on Thursday, on A Current Affair, that Queensland needed to show more compassion to those in northern NSW communities when it comes to their borders.
“I just want the Queensland government to have a compassionate approach to people in our norther border communities who are doing it tough,” she said.