Upcoming Gypsy Day presents a risk of Covid-19 transmission in the farming community that needs to be actively managed, says Taranaki Civil Defence.
“Gypsy, or Moving Day, is a date when dairy farm workers, contractors, sharemilkers and herds traditionally move farms,” says Taranaki Civil Defence Controller Craig Campbell-Smart.
“At this stage, we don’t know what the alert level will be on Gypsy Day on 1 June or what level of inter-regional travel there will be. While numbers trend down and alert level reviewed, any new cases could reverse this.
“For these reasons, we are urging Taranaki’s farming community to plan ahead and take practical steps to minimise unnecessary transit and risk of transmission. These could include minimising the number of people you come into contact with and taking note of those you do, minimising any unnecessary travel, and making sure you’re working together to look after each other.
“Dairy industry leaders including DairyNZ, Federated Farmers, FMG, Fonterra and Ministry of Primary Industries have developed guidelines to minimise the risks and negative impacts. Those anticipating a move on 1 June are advised to keep up to date with those organisations’ websites.
“We also know that Gypsy Day puts a lot of pressure on our rural businesses, workers, families and communities and COVID-19 poses heightened challenges and complications.”
Campbell-Smart’s advice is to keep talking to neighbours, partners and family, and friends and to be open about the challenges we are facing.
“There’s no barrier to picking up the phone and talking through what’s going on, and some great online tools available to help,” he says.
Useful resources for rural communities
- Keeping safe on dairy farms during COVID-19 (DairyNZ): www.bit.ly/dairy-hygiene(external link) - handy checklist to download and use.
- COVID-19 FAQs for primary industries (MPI): www.bit.ly/MPI-FAQ(external link)
- Stock feed planning service (MPI and sector groups): 0800 4DAIRYNZ (0800 4 324 7969 –diary); or 0800 BEEFLAMB (0800 233 352 – drystock).
- Rural Support Trusts: 0800 RURAL HELP (0800 787 254) - can connect farming families with professionals including farming or business advice, suppliers, financial information, health, and counselling services.
- Farmstrong: www.farmstrong.co.nz(external link) - nationwide wellbeing programme for the rural community.
The most up to date information on COVID-19 is on www.covid19.govt.nz(external link).
For the latest Taranaki Civil Defence Emergency Management updates, visit our website www.cdemtaranaki.govt.nz(external link) and Taranaki Civil Defence Emergency Management Facebook page(external link)
For information on the public health measures in place under Alert Level 4, visit: https://covid19.govt.nz/government-actions/covid-19-alert-level/(external link)
Authorised by: Craig Campbell-Smart, CDEM Group Controller
Media enquiries: Public Information Manager, 0800 900 049