MDJ , firstly it wasn't his decision. The CHO does not decide operational matters ,whether he should or shouldn't is another question but in Victoria he doesn'tNot an unfair summary Ian. But I read this and question the real foresight of those in charge.
It stretches credulity that Sutton didn’t know about the use of private security until May. But it should be said that even if he had, it probably wouldn’t have made any difference.
He said in his evidence to the inquiry that he wouldn’t necessarily have acted to stop it. “I think the wisdom, we have in hindsight is a key element here. I’m not sure anyone at the point in time of decision-making around hotel quarantine commencement might have been able to foreshadow some of the complexities of that workforce.”
Would it be unfair to expect someone with Brett's background and expertise to identify that quarantine was the most crucial element of risk around the spread of the virus? or that someone involved in all those discussions around quarantine didn't say lets make sure we get this right, 100% watertight? It is easy in hindsight but that's why people are charged with immense responsibility and remunerated accordingly (maybe the pay isn't enough to get the very best people?)
Sutton has been immense and has the respect of almost everyone in the field across the state. If he loses his job for this the big losers are the people of Victoria.
The question behind all of this is whether in March 2020 it was reasonable to be able to predict that a few security guards would get COVID and cause this issue and that wouldn't have happened if it was the ADF or Police? Personally I have my doubts because the issue wasn't the security guards so much but the training of them, infection control and contact tracing in a couple of the hotels. The ADF and Police would have been trained the same way by the same people. Our defence personnel aren't trained in pandemic infection prevention, nor are our police. In my view even though it happened with security guards we should have been able to control it and we didn't for a variety of reasons.
I have posted before that those who were ultimately responsible were those actually running the program and that was the DHHS but not under the direct control of the CHO.
By all means find out what happened but we have to blame the right people. That's my view FWIW