Coronavirus crisis hits Qld hard: All you need to know

BREAKING: Qld to close its borders

THE brutal reality of shutdowns forced by the surging coronavirus pandemic has been reflected in 'Depression' like scenes of people queueing for help at Centrelink offices.

On the Gold Coast, lines are stretching for more than a block around one of the biggest Centrelink offices.

Hundreds of people, many wearing protective face masks arrived at the Centrelink long before opening, with the queue stretching down a block and around a corner. There have been similar scenes in Ipswich.

 

Queues formed outside the Annerley Road Centrelink after the announcement by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Sunday night. The line continued to grow until it was around the corner.
Queues formed outside the Annerley Road Centrelink after the announcement by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Sunday night. The line continued to grow until it was around the corner. Kieran Bicheno

The Federal Government's online portal for unemployment benefits crashed under the increased strain.

Both the Centrelink app and the entire MyGov portal fell over shortly before 9am, with users unable to log into their accounts to update their information or register for allowances including Newstart.

Social media users also reported being unable to get through to Centrelink over the phone, instead met with messages to call back later.

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"There is unprecedented demand for the service right now, but Australians need to be patient. Try logging on later today or even tomorrow," Government Services Minister Stuart Robert told AAP on Monday.

Services Australia said it was experiencing "very high demand" but a lot of queries involved the same questions, so pleaded with those unsure about the payments to visit servicesaustralia.gov.au/COVID19.

TOO CLOSE: A group of young people socialise at Mooloolaba on Sunday. Photo: Supplied
TOO CLOSE: A group of young people socialise at Mooloolaba on Sunday. Photo: Supplied

On the Sunshine Coast, some of the areas biggest employers are trying to work out how to keep their workers for months. 

It comes as a GP issued his own warning after spotting youths crowded around a table at Mooloolaba on the weekend.

In Toowoomba, a staff member at a local school has contracted the virus.

In Warwick, the mental and financial toll of coronavirus is far greater than the physical, according to owners of Rose City Meats, Peter and Michelle Wright.

Peter became the first publicly confirmed case of COVID-19 in Warwick after the couple returned from a 50th birthday dinner at a Noosa restaurant last week.

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