What you need to know

On the front line: Moonee Valley Environmental Health Officer Joanne Higgins


The Environmental Health Officers, or ‘Healthies’ as they’re also known are some of the most important Council workers you’ve probably never heard of.

The ‘Healthies’ make sure your local restaurant is following food safety rules so you don’t get food poisoning.

They carry out inspections on tattoo parlours and beauty salons.

They investigate infectious disease outbreaks in aged care and child care.

They even investigate noise complaints.

Joanne Higgins is one of Moonee Valley’s Environmental Health Officers.

The coronavirus isn’t stopping her and the team working on the front line for the community.

Ms Higgins said the Environmental Health team play a key role in promoting public health and have a responsibility to the local community, now even more so.

“We are still undertaking inspections and investigations, but now we need to highlight social distancing and emphasising hand hygiene, for ourselves and the businesses we visit,” she said.

“We have been providing local businesses with education on how to best continue to protect themselves, staff and customers during this time and we’ve been completing spot checks of hygiene, sanitising and cleanliness in the last few weeks.”

The message from Ms Higgins during this crisis is simple: stay home and order in!

“Everyone is doing the best they can, we are continuing our job protecting the public health of the community, please do the same and stay home – order food from one of our local food businesses.

Joanne is one of our community members helping to #rallymooneevalley during the coronavirus State of Emergency. If you have a story of an individual or group rallying in the face of the outbreak, we’d love to hear about it. Simply register here, and submit an article.