Thurgoona mother Joan Parker has spent four weeks in Melbourne unable to come home

SIDE BY SIDE: Joan Parker has been in Melbourne for a month, unable to return to her Thurgoona home, caring for her terminally ill daughter Deborah Cavaye
SIDE BY SIDE: Joan Parker has been in Melbourne for a month, unable to return to her Thurgoona home, caring for her terminally ill daughter Deborah Cavaye

A dedicated mother who has remained in Melbourne for more than a month caring for her terminally ill daughter has labelled the compassionate permit system "confusing" and lacking in common sense.

Joan Parker, of Thurgoona near Albury in southern NSW, made the tough decision to leave her 82-year-old husband at home in NSW when her daughter Deborah, who is battling stage four breast cancer, was given just four weeks to live.

Mrs Parker said while she is thankful her 52-year-old daughter is still with her, the inability to return home for a day or two because of the border closure is "lacking in common sense".

"Deb suddenly developed another complication and was given a bad prognosis," she said.

"The whole family wanted to go down to see her while she was still able to communicate and participate in life.

"They didn't want to wait till she was comatose and literally dying - COVID put an end to those aspirations.

"For me, my wish was that I could come home every now and then to see my husband and rest for a few days before going back to Deb and the family.

FAMILY: Deborah Cavaye with her husband Glenn Cavaye and step-daughters Leila and Bella Cavaye.

FAMILY: Deborah Cavaye with her husband Glenn Cavaye and step-daughters Leila and Bella Cavaye.

"The compassionate permit system simply looked at the fact I was coming from Melbourne and they declined it.

"I have now been in Melbourne for four weeks.

"I just have to wait it out now until the border reopens."

Mrs Parker's story is just one of many families have faced when trying to cross the border for compassionate reasons since the closure in July and comes after a daughter shared her story about being stuck 270 kilometres away as her mother died across the border.

And while she agrees there has to be processes and restrictions on why people are allowed back in - she hopes there is some change if the border is ever closed again.

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"It has made it very hard for the whole family - the eldest son just made the decision to come down to Melbourne from NSW to see his sister for a few days and then fly back to Sydney and do the quarantine," she said.

"I can understand the restrictions need to be there for all different things but this compassion bit comes into it and I just found it was completely lacking.

"It was all focused on as if we were going into NSW to look after and we were not it was the other way around. That is what didn't seem to be addressed in any of the criteria.

"I just thought if this has to happen again I hope they can come up with a better idea for around the border."

Mrs Parker plans to make the commute up and down the highway between Melbourne and Thurgoona multiple times from November 23 when the border reopens.

This story Mum split between husband and terminally ill daughter over border first appeared on The Border Mail.