It’s been eight weeks since little Memphis last hugged his mum as the hard border ban continues to cause heartbreak.
A three-year-old boy has become the latest heartbreaking face of the Queensland Premier’s “heartless” border closures.
Memphis Francis left the Fraser Coast in early July to visit his grandparents on a cattle station south of Griffith in rural NSW and has been unable to return home ever since.
Queensland put up a strict border with NSW on July 23, meaning Memphis has been unable to return home to his parents and younger sister Paisley after multiple exemption knockbacks.
His grandparents are doing their best to keep him amused, but his family say Memphis is desperate to go home.
Speaking to 2GB on Thursday morning, Memphis’s mother, Dominique Facer, said eight weeks without her “little mate” had “almost killed” her.
“We miss him. We want him to come,” she said.
Grandmother Alex Facer said Memphis facetimed his parents daily but often descended into tears, confused as to why he was unable to go home.
“Something has to be done, we need these kids home,” she said.
“We’ve said we’ll drive him to Goondiwindi and his parents will meet us there and they’ll go straight home.
“They’ll isolate at home for three weeks, a month, whatever. We don’t want him to go into a hotel and catch Covid there.”
Ms Palaszczuk has refused to commit to reopening the border even when the country reaches the 70 and 80 per cent vaccination rates because she is apparently concerned about leaving unvaccinated children “vulnerable”.
But, Memphis’s parents and grandparents say children like Memphis are more vulnerable being separated from their families.
Dominique said she had tried for weeks to get Memphis an exemption to return home and bypass hotel quarantine on the grounds of compassion, but she was knocked back.
“How is that not compassionate grounds?” she said.
“My three-year-old son has been separated for weeks from his family. It is not fair.”
This week Ms Palaszczuk has come under fire for allowing 100 NRL partners and family members to enter the state from Covid-ravaged Sydney despite putting a two-week pause on arrivals from NSW, Victoria and the ACT.
The ban was due to hotel quarantine being overwhelmed, but she has backed down slightly and will allow 50 Queenslanders and people relocating to the state into the facilities this weekend.