A look at Australia’s ‘voluntary’ COVID camps, where inmates need to scale barbed wire to leave

Thomas Lambert

December 3, 2021


Multiple reports have emerged from Australia detailing the horrible reality of forced quarantine in supposedly voluntary camps, where the innocent hostages must scale barbed wire to escape the facilities.

On December 1, three teens were arrested and returned to the Howard Springs quarantine prison camp after they scaled barbed wire fences in a desperate attempt to escape their prison guards, who swiftly launched a manhunt for the teens.

They were caught in the late afternoon on Wednesday after travelling several kilometres on foot and were, then, returned to their rooms (essentially prison cells with nicer furniture and a porch).

Less than a week earlier, a 27-year-old man managed to pull off the same daring escape by evading guards and scaling the barbed wire fence. But, unfortunately, he, too, was hunted down like a runaway slave and returned to the facility.

In an interview with UnherdTV, Hayley Hodgson, a recently released Australian, detailed what life is like inside one of Australia’s voluntary prison camps and why someone may feel compelled to leave.

“You feel like you’re in prison,” explains Hodgson. “You feel like you’ve done something wrong; it’s inhumane what they’re doing.”

“You are so small; they just overpower you. And you’re literally nothing. It’s like ‘you do what we say, or you’re in trouble, we’ll lock you up for longer.’ Yeah, they were even threatening me that if I was to do this again, ‘we will extend your time in here.'”

What makes matters worse is under what precedent Hodgson was detained. It wasn’t her vaccination status. It wasn’t because she tested positive for COVID-19. She merely was in contact with someone who tested positive.

As UnherdTV reports, Hodgson’s journey through the prison camps began after her friend tested positive. Police, then, tracked her down via her license plate, which was caught on a security camera, and surprised her with a visit. No warning. No phone call.

She told police that she had a COVID test and there must be a mistake when officers were already aware she had not.

“So, then the police officers blocked my driveway,” Hodgson details. “I walked out, and I said, ‘What’s going on? Are you guys testing me for COVID? What’s happening?’ They said, ‘No, you’re getting taken away. And you have no choice. You’re going to Howard Springs. You either come with us now, and we’ll put you in the back of the divvy van. Or you can have a choice to get a ‘COVID cab’… I just said, ‘I don’t consent to this. I don’t understand why I can’t just self-isolate at home, like a lot of other people are doing.’ And they just said, ‘We’ve just been told from higher up where to take you. And that’s all that there is.'”

According to Hodgson, she was subsequently put in the back of a golf buggy by men in hazmat suits and transferred to the facility, which is surrounded by fences and barbed wire and where the prisoners are monitored 24/7 to make sure no one leaves their designated room and porch for anything other than doing laundry or something for which they need approval.

If this is the precedent being set — that it doesn’t matter if you’re vaccinated or have COVID — then everyone is a potential prisoner in Australia. It shouldn’t be this way.

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