A wave of strikes and protests is hitting Sydney this week as public workers take industrial action, climate activists plan demonstrations, and Sydney-siders march against the US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the constitutional right to abortion.
Here is the week of protests and strikes:
Monday June 27
Early on Monday, climate activism group Blockade Australia organised a protest on climate change in Sydney’s CBD, attended by around 60 activists at Hyde Park.
10 climate protesters were arrested, including a 22-year-old Lismore woman who allegedly locked herself to the steering wheel of her car and parked at the northern entrance of the Harbour Tunnel. A motorist drove into a crowd of protesters causing further disruptions to the scene.
Monday protests by Blockade Australia caused major traffic disruptions across Sydney. Photo: Blockadeaustralia.com
The protesters are expected to face charges, as well as fines of up to $22,000, as said by NSW Deputy Premier Paul Toole.
Blockade Australia has said they plan to continue protesting into the week.
Tuesday June 28
Tuesday marks the beginning of a week of industrial action by rail workers in protest of safety concerns over an unsafe fleet of trains manufactured overseas. Rail workers have pledged to have trains only reach a maximum speed of 60km/hr in a ‘go slow’ movement.
Transport for NSW have said in a statement that trains are “expected to run on an amended timetable with a reduction of up to 50 per cent of normal services during the peak period”. The Rail, Tram and Bus Union kicked off the industrial action after NSW government cancelled a union meeting with transport officials on June 24.
Nurses and midwives are also engaging in strikes, as they plan to walk off the job over staff to patient ratio concerns. A closed mass meeting planned by the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association will go ahead at 2pm in Town Hall.
This comes after the union was issued with a dispute from the Health Ministry to stop the planned strike, but the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association will go ahead regardless.
Wednesday June 29
The rail strike will continue on Wednesday with the union issuing an indefinite ban on workers returning to the Railroad Operations Centre (ROC).
Protesters at a rally held by the NSW Teachers Federation in May. Photo: Facebook.
Public school and Catholic school teachers will rally in Macquarie Street to protest.
Additionally, train drivers will refuse to operate out of their home depots, and a union ban on work associated with Sydney’s metros will commence.
Friday July 1 and Saturday July 2
Friday will see more rail action as train drivers refuse to operate trains that have been manufactured overseas, which makes up around 30% of all available trains.
On Saturday, a protest against the overturning of the US Supreme Court ruling on Roe V Wade, which allows Americas access to abortions, will go ahead at 1pm at Sydney Town Hall.
The rally’s event says the protest is to “stand in solidarity with abortion rights protesters fighting to reinstate Roe v Wade”. Hosts of the rally include Greens Senator Mehreen Faruqi and Senator Elect David Shoebridge, as well as Greens MP for Balmain Jenny Leong.
Groups involved include the University of Sydney’s Women’s collective, Unite Against the Far Right and the National Union of Students.