The dozens of Canberrans stranded at the NSW-Victorian border may be interested to know there are people driving north that Gladys Berejiklian is happy to let pass through the state.
While a doctor returning from locum shifts in Victorian hospitals has been denied passage home, MPs travelling to Canberra have been able to get an exemption to drive through NSW to get to the ACT.
The Canberra Times is aware of a handful of politicians who arrived in the capital from Victoria on the weekend, two days after the NSW government's late-night ban on border crossings came into effect.
The members in question had to get new permits after the previous passes were quashed by NSW's eleventh-hour decree. Indi MP Dr Helen Haines will also drive to Canberra for the August 24 sitting, after isolating in her Victorian home for the next fortnight.
It's important that MPs are able to come to Canberra to fulfil their parliamentary duties and represent their communities. The Canberra Times understands NSW could have been subject to a constitutional challenge if it tried to stop them from attending.
But the optics of this are terrible. While ordinary citizens are unable to return home due to the NSW government's late-night edict, parliamentarians are able to pass through without issue. It smacks of double-standards.
The hurdles Canberrans have had to jump over to get home make the obstacles on Australian Ninja Warrior look like monkey bars in a school playground by comparison.
One woman who told her story on the condition of anonymity has been trying to move back to Canberra from Melbourne for eight weeks.
June 24 was supposed to be moving day, but that was put off because the first six-week lockdown came into effect in Melbourne. She was then told she'd need to wait another two weeks for a permit from NSW authorities in order to pass through the state.
When NSW cancelled all border passes on Friday, she burst into tears. After a lot of phone calls, she was told she could stay in a hotel in Melbourne for one night and fly directly into Canberra, before self-isolating at home for two weeks. Her dogs will be able to get on the flight too and they'll be collected by a friend.
The truck with all her furniture will not arrive until the Monday after she goes into self-isolation. She will be sleeping on a blow-up mattress and thanking her lucky stars it's winter, so her Canberra Milk stays cold outside without a fridge.
Labor's Katy Gallagher says there's no reason why Canberrans stuck in this administrative gridlock can't get a similar deal to MPs crossing the border for work. Bean MP David Smith argues Canberrans who have no choice but to travel home by road shouldn't be treated differently to the MPs facing the same challenge.
It would make perfect sense to honour the 100 or so permits which had already been issued to Canberrans before this late-night change took effect. However common sense does not appear to be a factor in any decisions being made about borders at present.