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Oxford Street's Mardi Gras Protest Is Set to Go Ahead After a Last-Minute NSW Health Exemption

The march will take place on Saturday afternoon before the Mardi Gras Parade at the SCG.
By Samantha Teague
March 05, 2021
By Samantha Teague
March 05, 2021

An LGBTQIA+ rights protest planned for Mardi Gras Parade day has been given a last-minute green light after receiving an exemption from NSW Health on the afternoon of Friday, March 5.

At time of publication, 1200 people had responded 'going' to The Mardi Gras March 2021: Take Over Oxford Street Facebook event. Under current COVID-19 restrictions, outdoor protests in Greater Sydney are limited to a maximum of 500 people.

NSW Police had previously planned to take organisers of the protest to the Supreme Court today in a bid to prevent it from going ahead, but the NSW Health exemption means this is unlikely happen.

Organised by Pride in Protest and LGBTI Rights Australia, the protest is set to kick off at 2pm on Saturday, March 6 at Taylor Square, before protesters march down Oxford Street to Hyde Park.

Protester organisers have outlined five key demands, which include the legalisation of drugs, decriminalisation of sex work and ending of the overpolicing of Indigenous Australian communities, mandatory detention of refugees and transphobic and religious freedoms bills.

In a lengthy post on its Facebook page, Pride in Protest explained how the event was granted an exemption after negotiations with NSW Health to improve its contact tracing efforts for the protest.

"This is a massive win for not only the right to protest, but for the queer community to say that the fight against transphobia and homophobia cannot wait," the organisation said in the statement

We have just been granted a health exemption by NSW Health so lets make Saturday as loud and proud as possible! 🏳‍🌈 Read...

Posted by Pride in Protest on Thursday, March 4, 2021

At the start of the protest in Taylor Square, there will be 20 COVID-19 marshals with sanitary materials and QR codes for registration. Protesters are also asked to maintain social distancing, wear a mask and bring hand sanitiser. Pride in Protest has included a rundown of its safety protocols over here.

The Mardi Gras March protest is taking over Oxford Street while this year's Mardi Gras Parade heads to the SCG from 6pm. A handful of last-minute tickets for the parade are still available over here.

Mardi Gras March 2021: Take Over Oxford Street is set to start at 2pm on Saturday, March 6 at Taylor Square. Registration before attending is strongly encouraged.

Published on March 05, 2021 by Samantha Teague

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