“We are fighting for our standard of life. We want our sovereign right to our bodies,” said Kate Siegert, who is unvaccinated, as she watched protesters move forward to block police advances.
Siegert, who has made several trips from her home in Auckland to join the protest, said she lost her IT job because of mandates requiring vaccination for those who work in the health industry.
At least 10 children were seen within the protest area and police said they had concerns for their wellbeing.
Lisa Suasua, 55, who has been part of the protests for weeks said she will stay until the end.
“They (the police) have been pretty brutal. They don’t talk, they ask us to move on,” she said.
“They came in about 6 in the morning and started pulling up the tents in the church (grounds) that has women and children in it and just started coming through with their riot gear,” she said.
A country of five million people, New Zealand imposed tough anti-virus curbs that restricted its cases to just over 118,000 and 56 deaths, far lower than in many developed countries. But fuelled by the Omicron variant, daily infections are currently hovering near record levels.
About 95 per cent of eligible people are vaccinated with two doses, with shots mandatory for some staff in front-line jobs.
With material from Channel News Asia Read More