House party-goers fined as thousands gather for lockdown protests
Almost 250 people have been fined for breaking lockdown rules over the past 24 hours in NSW - as thousands gathered for protest marches in Sydney and Melbourne.
Almost 250 people have been fined for breaking COVID-19 lockdown rules over the past 24 hours in NSW - as thousands gathered for protest marches across Australia.
Protest marches saw hundreds walk through Sydney's inner-city, with another rally held in Melbourne and a third in Brisbane.
Some of the protesters were carrying placards with anti-vaccination messages.
NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Gary Worboys said ahead of the event, a lockdown protest being held in Sydney could be "disastrous."
"I think it's not really the time for people to come together closely, to exercise somewhat they would think was their democratic right and it may well be," he said.
"New South Wales Police are in a position where they will try and work with the organisers and the specific group leaders to make sure that they comply with the public health orders, and in fact we don't get a situation where we end up with a spreading event in Sydney which would, of course, be disastrous."https://twitter.com/NatarjshaKramer/status/1418760878959198211?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw
Most of the fines handed out yesterday were for people blatantly disobeying the rules by having parties at home.
Police were called to a party at Pyrmont where eight people were fined $1000.
Six people were fined at a birthday party at Riverwood in the city's South.
People are not supposed to have anybody to their home at all.
At Belmont near Newcastle - where five people are allowed to a home - 10 people were fined for being at a party.
NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Gary Worboys called the party hosts and guests "highly irresponsible."
"People are actually planning these events and inviting people around. They know it is outside the public health order," he said.
However, NSW Health Minister Hazzard dismissed raising fines to try and deter people, saying officials are working with multi-cultural communities to get the messages out.
"It is one of the joys of this nation that we are a proud multicultural nation, but sometimes people who have come from overseas perhaps have suffered at the hands of other governments and perhaps getting the messages through is challenging," he said.
"So, we need to find ways to keep working at that and get the messages through."
"We really need our community, particularly in southwestern and western Sydney, to stay at home, to hear the message and stay at home.
"And don't intermingle with family members from other households."
Plus, 18 people who were among those who gathered in relation to a family "tragedy" in Sydney's Pendle Hill have now been diagnosed with the virus.
It's not known if they were also fined.