Anti-Vaxxers Staged A Bizarre ‘Save Australia’ Protest In New York City

“What is happening in Melbourne?” and “Australia is the example for the New World Order” read a couple of signs.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 04: People march as they protest against NYC's coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine mandate that went into effect today for public school employees on October 04, 2021 in New York City. According to Mayor Bill de Blasio ninety-five percent of all full-time DOE employees were vaccinated, that includes 96% of all teachers and 99% of all principals. Almost 8,000 out of all 148,000 DOE employees, 3,000 out of 78,000 teachers and 12 out of 1,600 principals are unvaccinated with most being replaced by substitutes. People who remain unvaccinated make up nearly 97% of all COVID-19 hospitalizations across NYC. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

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A “Save Australia” protest erupted in New York City on Monday (Eastern Time Zone) over vaccination mandates and lockdowns across the ocean. A crowd gathered outside the Australian consulate in Manhattan waving right-wing conspiracy posters alongside the Australian flag.

The protestors were trying to show solidarity to Australia’s own anti-vax movement, most recently manifested in Melbourne’s construction shutdown after hundreds violently protested compulsory vaccines in the industry. The New York protest also got a bit touch-and-go with police intervening after a COVID test site tent was knocked over by the group.

The crowd is thought to be predominantly made up of Department of Education staffers, after the agency introduced mandatory vaccinations which came into effect on that day. A marcher was heard saying that have “so much free time now” that they would go to schools “handing out flyers to parents”.

While Australia has been used as a case study since the start of the pandemic — at times as a shining star for initially preventing widespread outbreaks, and on the flip side, for an embarrassing national vaccine rollout — American conservatives have once again used us to pedal their anti-vax, anti-lockdown movement.

Republican Ron DeSantis publicly questioned whether Australia was a ‘free country’ last week over restrictions and mask use. “Is Australia freer than communist China right now? I don’t know. The fact that’s even a question tells you something’s gone dramatically off the rails,” the Florida Governor said. In August, the Texas Freedom Coalition posted a map of Australia with “What the world’s largest prison looks like from space” on top of it.

According to New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, 95 percent of Department of Education staff have been vaccinated. Over 60 percent of eligible populations in the whole city have been fully vaccinated, and 70.8 percent have received at least one dose.

Photo Credit: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images