Every day was different

Every day have been different for the Transport and Civil Division during this time. Usually in an emergency management situation, the Department of Infrastructure Planning and Logistics is required to redeploy people and change their business priorities for a short time, usually for two days to a week. We soon realised this was a different type of emergency that will last for months.

When the border restrictions started, the Division split into two teams. One to cover the COVID response while the other continued business as usual, as much as was possible.

Some critical business as usual roles were backfilled.

Some staff who were not able to do their usual work were moved to other teams or agencies, and ended up helping the Department of the Chief Minister’s (DCM) remote travel team and the Department of Trade, Business and Innovation’s business grants team.

The General Manager of the Transport and Civil division, Louise McCormack, also provided advice and support to DCM and Commonwealth colleagues on transport and logistics issues, which in turn informed National Cabinet and a variety of national bodies.

Louise says that “my team would probably agree that achieving a positive health outcome for the Territory is what we are most proud of. We are also proud of the leadership role the Territory has taken in its response and in beginning a return to ‘normal’.”

Louise is proud of how the team has stood up and been ready to do what needed to be done. “The team put aside their own concerns, pulled together and did what we had to do to support the Territory in any way we could.”

Barriers came down in the NTPS, between jurisdictions and with industry. Our existing relationships developed even closer operational working relationships. The public sector and industry were open and worked together towards a common goal.

Everyone in the Territory was willing to help and do whatever it took. We were affected when we saw the line of people outside Centrelink. It made things very real. The coffee shop across the road was bringing coffee over to people in the queue. It was these sorts of small kind gestures that impressed us. My team saw similar examples across the board where Territorians pulled together to look out for each other.

Public servants faced the same risks as other Territorians, and they were still out there doing what they could to keep the Territory moving. For many public servants, self-isolating and working from home was not an option. For example our bus drivers and MVR staff.

COVID has made the public service more visible to everyone and demonstrated the breadth of services offered to the Territory.

Teams responding to the COVID challenges included

Provide support and transport and engineering advice to Police and Health covering the whole of NT and Northern region – Garry Fischer (lead), Sharon Jones, Graeme Finch, Chandan Kalase, Casey Lovelock, Jenny Malone

Provide support and transport and engineering advice to Police and Health for Southern region – May Taylor

This was the transport and engineering function group tasking centre. Approximately 25% of all task in WebEOC were relating to transport.

This team provided significant support to the transport and freight industry with border restriction compliance and problem solving – Simon Saunders (lead), Bernie Ingram, Alexia Hohipa-Wilson, Jo Cruickshank, Thomas Carroll, Sam Hadfield, Yasmin Daw, Dennielle Cahill, Chantelle Shaw, Jacky Gill, Terri Larkin, Litsa Rigas, Beth Niemeier, Laura Fletcher, Lindy Willing

This team assisted DIPL contractors to obtain the correct approvals relating to the Biosecurity Act and designated area compliance – Hannah Feneley (lead), Dionne Davey, Carly Waite, Frances Tenison, Graeme Finch, Chandan Kalase

(producing info for DIPL industry stakeholders) – Tegan Berg, Shannon Rice, Angelina Anictomatis, Rowland Richardson

Keeping business as usual running and assisting the transport and freight industries throughout COVID-19.  This included support packages, information on how to operate in a COVID safe way, ensuring that critical supply chains continued to operate, support public and passenger transport continued operations/ Nick Papandonakis, Sue Hakala, Brett Clifford, Glenda Thornton, Greg Turner, Cindy Lee-McDonald, Claire Manalo, Jon Abbey

liaison with the Australian Government officers on infrastructure stimulus packages. Bruce Michael, Bob Pemble, Ed Smelt, Shane Tepper, Aftab Abro

BAU in the Regions including border control support to Police – Claire Brown, Darcy Dunbar, Gunalan Sivachelvan

Last updated: 06 August 2020

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