Beef Central reports that Australian stock handlers and veterinarians working on live export vessels are unable to secure basic health insurance for their voyages. A large number of stockpersons and most veterinarians are hired for voyages as independent contractors, not as export company employees, and are required to secure their own personal insurance for voyages. However, with Covid and the recent loss of the Gulf Livestock 1, insurance companies are not prepared to take on the risk: Covid and the recent vessel sinking.
The insurance issue comes at a time when accredited stockpersons and veterinarians are in short supply anyhow due to COVID quarantine restrictions - now they cant fly home, they all have to endure the stultifying boredom of return trips on an empty livestock ship (not exactly luxury cruise vessels) AND then potentially have Covid quarantine in a hotel when they get back. Hardly enticing conditions.
Could Covid achieve what decades of advocacy have failed to achieve???
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