Steve Price looked gutted on The Project as he revealed he has only seen his elderly mother once in 2020 and may never see her again due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The veteran broadcaster told fellow hosts Carrie Bickmore and Waleed Aly on Monday night how his heart was breaking.
‘My mother is in her late 80s – I’ve seen her once this year,’ he said via video link from Melbourne in a shell-shocked tone.
‘Now she’s in the zone where anything could happen and I just feel gutted that I might not – never – physically see her again.
Bickmore tried to console the 65-year-old, telling him to have hope that Victoria would get on top of the coronavirus outbreak, before Aly chimed in.
‘There’s every chance you’ll see your mum in the not-too-distant future,’ Aly said.
Price, however, looked defeated.
‘I hope so, because it just breaks my heart,’ he said gravely, looking down.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews declared a State of Disaster in Victoria on Sunday, with Melbourne residents subject to a curfew from 8pm to 5am as the state tries to get control of the runaway coronavirus outbreak.
Melbourne residents are unable to leave their home except for essential shopping, exercise, care-giving or essential work.
They are unable to travel more than 5km from their homes and people must work from home if they can, while many businesses such as car washes, personal care salons, engineering firms and some manufacturing must close.
The rest of Victoria is on the less restrictive Stage Three lockdowns.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on Monday that workers – both citizens and foreign workers on temporary visas – who had run out of sick leave but were told to self-isolate would be paid $1500 a fortnight to ensure they stayed home.
Earlier, Price revealed how hard Victoria’s State of Disaster, declared on Sunday, had hit him, emotionally.
‘It feels so much different this time, doesn’t it?’ he said.
‘I mean I feel really – I feel sad, I feel anxious, I feel sad for all of the businesses that are not going to recover.
‘I feel very anxious about the state that I’ve spent much of my life living in, and that many of the things we take for granted may never come back.’
Price said the first round of lockdowns were unique and people didn’t know what to expect.
‘Now we know what it is going to be like and you can’t see an end. I mean this is the problem – you can’t see an end to this,’ he said.
Victoria is Australia’s hardest hit state, recording 429 new coronavirus cases on Monday to hit a total of 11,937, of which 6489 are active cases.
New South Wales is also recording a steady number of new cases daily, with 13 on Sunday.
Worldwide the coronavirus pandemic has infected 18.2 million people as of Monday night, with 693,395 deaths.
The USA is the hardest hit country with 4.8 million cases and 158,375 deaths so far – more than were killed in the Vietnam and Korean wars combined.