Yesterday, Premier Daniel Andrews extended the Victorian State of Emergency for another, final, four weeks, to September 13.
The reason why I say final, is that legally a state of emergency can only be extended in 4-week increments to a maximum 6-month period.
Mid-March was when Andrews first declared a state of emergency, making September 13, that maximum total period of six months.
A state of emergency gives the government broad powers that override any fundamental human rights.
For example, it gives the government the power to:
- detain anyone for as long as they want
- prevent anyone from entering the state
- give any other direction they deem necessary
- enter A home, business or anywhere else to search and seize anything they want without a warrant
- if they ask for information, you have to give it to them
And the list goes on.
And that’s precisely why there are strict guidelines that govern the rules of declaring a state of emergency, and specifically around the maximum time. It is to protect citizens from a tyrannical government ever hijacking our democracy.
So you can understand why I’m confused that no one in the media seems to be questioning Dan Andrew’s move to extend his state of emergency capabilities indefinitely.