The COVID-19 pandemic response has changed our lives, but Bicycle NSW continues to respond strategically.
We have worked to ensure our content, communication, and the way we serve members upholds the health and control measures put in place. This is important to avoid confusion that could endanger lives, and result in fines.
Basis Of Our Approach
The Bicycle NSW approach has secured the support of MP’s health and government staff. It is focused at a state level, on the basis that:
- Enacting, implementing and enforcing measures is controlled by states
- Road space reallocation issues, open space planning and financial resources to respond will require state approval or control
- Responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have involved variation between states and we need to focus on, and align with the NSW response
Bicycle NSW has asked for a planned response from government to help bike riders, and would balance the competing needs of health and essential workers, commuters, families and individuals seeking to exercise. We are acutely aware of the need to respond to more people riding bikes to work, commute and exercise, as well as to reduce congestion in some areas that threaten infection control.
It is encouraging to see calls by groups and individuals for measures to support more people to ride bikes. From Bicycle User Groups, cycling clubs and sports cyclists to an academic-led national letter campaign. This activism shows government, at all levels, the importance and impact of bike riding, and its potential to benefit communities.
We remain committed to a state-based, planned approach, in order to ensure the needs of pedestrians, motor vehicle users, police and health workers are incorporated. NSW has seen local responses to infection control vary within the state to protect regional communities, indigenous populations and to respond to infection ‘hot-spots’.
NSW will now move to a wider testing regime, in an effort to stamp out COVID-19 infection. We appreciate the NSW Government may need to retain tight controls over non-essential movement for a few more weeks, or to conserve resources to provide the best chances of successful infection control.
“We’re hearing daily of the challenges riders in NSW are facing. We agree more needs to be done, but the success of infection control depends on a planned approach,” said General Manager of Public Affairs, Bastien Wallace.
“Thank you to everyone who has changed how you ride, helped other people, and played a part in reducing the spread of COVID-19. Your efforts across NSW are working,” said Bastien.
Bicycle NSW looks forward to a planned approach to support increased rates of bike riding and open space use.