Thirty-three new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the Moree Plains Local Government Area (LGA) in the latest reporting period from 8pm Wednesday night.

The case explosion was believed to have originated from the public funeral for missing Gomeroi man Gordan Copeland last Thursday. 

The funeral saw hundreds of family members and the community walk through Moree’s main street and house gatherings.

Thirty cases were in Moree itself, two in Boggabilla, and one in Mungindi.

Moree Plains’ current population is around 13,000, with 20 per cent of its population of Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander descent.

Double vaccination rates in the area are over 76 per cent, with first dose sitting above 86 per cent.

However, the border community of Boggabilla has a double dose vaccination rate less than 40 per cent.

Hunter New England Health has also reported 51 cases of COVID-19 in the region, including nine in the Tamworth LGA, seven in Inverell, and two in Armidale.

Gordon Copeland’s death has been a widely public affair with protests earlier this year and a public funeral in his honour.(ABC New England North West: Lani Oataway)

The Member for Northern Tablelands, Adam Marshall, told the ABC everyone who’s tested positive is isolating and are supported by local authorities.

A COVID-19 ward has been established at the local hospital with eight beds available, but no one has been hospitalised yet.

Motel accommodation has also been set up for people who may struggle to isolate at home.

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