It seems a snowflake's chance in hell is a lot better than we all thought as one MP decides the COVIDSafe app is not so bad after all.
It seems a snowflake's chance in hell is a lot better than we all thought as one MP decides the COVIDSafe app is not so bad after all.

Hell, look which former sceptic has downloaded virus app

IT APPEARS snowflakes have every chance of surviving in Hell these days judging by the change of heart by Noosa MP Llew O'Brien about downloading the COVIDSafe app.

In mid-April the Member for Wide Bay said of the government push for the app to alert people who have come into contact with an coronavirus infected patient through their phones: "It is way too Big-Brotherish for me.

He added there's a "snowflake's chance in Hell" he would use the app.

Now the DeputySpeakers has come out and confessed to falling into line with the PM and the Cabinet push for millions more Australians to use this means of tracking any further risks of outbreaks.

"I have downloaded the app and I hope you join with me too," Mr O'Brien said in a media release.

Llew O'Brien has backflipped on the COVIDSafe app adoption.
Llew O'Brien has backflipped on the COVIDSafe app adoption.

"Obviously the app isn't the answer to everything, but it's another very important tool we can all use to help keep us safe from spreading COVID-19, enabling businesses to re-open, and getting people back to work.

"When I was first asked whether I would use what is now known as the COVIDSafe app, the app was barely in its infancy."

Mr O'Brien saidf there was scant information available about it.

"Indeed at the time, the concept was first presented to the public it was suggested that the app would be compulsory.

"My position was that I needed to know a lot more about how the app would operate before I would consider endorsing its use," he said.

Nor that he is informed about its functionality, security and privacy, and "exactly how any information harvested by the app would be stored, shared, and used" he's prepared to back it.

"My philosophical approach to government is that government should be smaller and less intrusive," he said.

"I'm very wary of any proposal that would bring Big Brother into people's lives and believe such proposals deserve full and proper scrutiny.

"We live in a technologically advanced society which brings many benefits, but it is always incumbent on our leaders to ensure that any app proposed by the Australian Government for use by Australians must improve their safet."

Mr O'Brien said it must be used properly, and not put people's privacy and the security of their data at risk - and be secure from foreign state actors.

"I raised a series of very detailed questions regarding my concerns about the app with the Government. I'm pleased to see that my concerns have all been addressed in the exposure draft of the Bill underpinning the app," he said.

"I encourage everyone to have a look at the Privacy Amendment (Public Health Contact Information) Bill 2020 at https://www.ag.gov.au/RightsAndProtections/Privacy/Documents/exposure-draft-privacy-amendment-public-health-contact-information.pdf."


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