Family of NZ sports star given exemption to isolate at Auckland home

The family of a high profile New Zealand sports star have reportedly side-stepped their managed isolation facility in favour of their luxury home.

Stuff reports the wife of the sportsman complained about the state of her room in managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) and was subsequently granted an exemption from the facility for herself and her children.

It's understood some of her children have special needs. 

The family are now in isolation at their $3 milion property in a wealthy suburb of Auckland.

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) told Newshub they could not comment on the specific family without a privacy waiver, but that exceptions to managed isolation are "rare".

"The threshold for granting an exemption for any category is extremely high and exemptions are rare. This is because as a key factor in assessing any application is the public health risk of transmitting COVID-19 to the community." 

Since July 14 2020 and January 31 2021 MBIE has granted six exemptions from managed isolation. Five of these were granted because the people had medical needs which would not be met in MIQ facilities and one was approved under exceptional circumstances.  

The spokesperson told Newshub there have also been five exemptions granted after a person entered MIQ and was there for at least three days.

"This may have been because all the information required to approve their application wasn’t received prior to the returnees’ arrival in New Zealand. Four were granted under the exceptional circumstances category and one under the medical needs category."

Stuff reports neighbours of the sports star's family say security guards are stationed outside the house, and a notice on the gate of the property warns all deliveries must be contactless.

There is no extra cost to the family for the guards stationed outside their home, the MBIE spokesperson confirmed.

Newshub has contacted the Ministry of Health for further comment.