Clare Bowditch hits out at Scott Morrison over “disastrously ill-advised” COVID-19 guidelines

Bowditch noted that 13 of her family members had contracted COVID-19 “in baton-style since Christmas”

Melbourne singer-songwriter Clare Bowditch has shared an open letter to Scott Morrison, criticising the Prime Minister for his – and by extension, the Liberal government’s – “disastrously ill-advised” guidelines surrounding COVID-19 and the botched availability of rapid antigen tests (RATs).

In her letter, shared last Wednesday (January 5), Bowditch pointed out the newly implemented rule that those diagnosed with COVID-19 must quarantine for a minimum of six days, after which – if they receive a negative RAT result – they’ll be allowed to re-enter public spaces. But with RATs increasingly sparse in many cities (and for many, including families, unaffordable), this rule becomes nigh-on impossible to comply with.

Noting that 13 of her family members had contracted COVID-19 “in baton-style since Christmas”, Bowditch wrote: “Please remind me again (for those of us who aren’t Prime Ministers) where do we (*ahem*) access these free and available RAT test[s] that you and your [Department of Health and Human Services] have advised me to engage with on day six?


“Asking your citizens to do things that you have made *actually* impossible in order to access the basic yet fundamental freedoms like the ability to leave our homes and make a living is… disastrously ill-advised, and probably not going to be easily forgotten.”

Have a read of Bowditch’s full letter below:

Bowditch went on to note that senior medical experts had offered “clear warning and advice” regarding the current surge of COVID-19 cases as early as last September. She continued: “Are there not thoughts that you could think, now, and actions you could take, now, that would help get us there?”

The letter comes as Australian states continue to break records in new daily cases of COVID-19. At the time of writing, the country has 495,141 active cases, with over 290,000 of those in New South Wales alone. Victoria tails NSW with just over 99,000 active cases.

Last May, Bowditch called on the government to amplify its efforts in distributing vaccinations, should Australia’s music industry bounce back from the struggles it faced over the first year of the pandemic. 


She also highlighted the double standard in allowing sporting events to go ahead with high attendance rates, while venues were left to suffer the blow of severely reduced capacities; she said that medical advice provided to the government needed to be reviewed, as the rules between both industries were unfairly varied.