Sunrise presenters Natalie Barr and David Koch ‘demand mandatory vaccines on set’ after last month’s Covid fears forced pregnant news anchor Edwina Bartholomew into isolation
Sunrise presenters Natalie Barr and David ‘Kochie’ Koch are reportedly refusing to work with unvaccinated hair and makeup artists after a Covid scare last month put everyone on set – including pregnant news anchor Edwina Bartholomew – at risk.
Seniors on Seven’s breakfast show, including Barr, Koch, Bartholomew and executive producer Michael Pell, are said to push for mandatory vaccines for crew members in a move that could set a precedent for the Australian TV industry.
There is particular concern about unvaccinated freelancers working for various shows in Sydney bringing the virus to ‘Brekky Central’, reports the Australian.
Taking a Stand: Sunrise hosts Natalie Barr (left) and David ‘Kochie’ Koch (right) are reportedly refusing to work with unvaccinated hair and makeup artists after a Covid scare last month made everyone on set — including the pregnant newscaster Edwina Bartholomew – endangered
These fears are compounded by the fact that Bartholomew, 38, is expecting a child and Koch, aged 65, is in a vulnerable age group for Covid-19.
Barr, 53, has also apparently expressed concern over having teenage sons, while Pell escalated the matter with Seven’s management on behalf of concerned staffers.
The media is considered ‘essential work’ during Covid and social distancing can be particularly challenging for those who work live on TV – all of which means vaccine mandates are likely to become the industry standard soon.
However, Seven’s move to mandatory vaccines has apparently attracted ‘private grumbles from at least one Sunrise’ [staffer]’ who has not been vaccinated and therefore cannot work on the show, claims The Australian.
Daily Mail Australia has contacted Seven for comment.
Bold move: Seniors on Seven’s breakfast show, including Barr, Koch, Bartholomew and executive producer Michael Pell, would push for mandatory vaccines for crew members in a move that could set a precedent for the Australian TV industry. Barr is pictured with a crew member from Sunrise
Sunrise had a Covid scare on the morning of Friday, August 27, after a crew member tested positive for the virus overnight after working at Seven’s Martin Place studios for three consecutive days.
Bartholomew went into self-isolation as close contact with the confirmed case, but thankfully returned a negative test result.
‘Hello and welcome to Friday everyone. And we join you after an overnight Covid-19 scare, a staffer tested positive,” Barr said at the start of the program.