Leavers 2021: Unofficial Leavers events welcoming unvaccinated kids

Taylar AmoniniThe West Australian
Anti-vax protesters outside Leavers 2021.
Camera IconAnti-vax protesters outside Leavers 2021. Credit: Taylar Amonini/Busselton-Dunsborough Times

Unofficial Leavers events welcoming unvaccinated Year 12 graduates have been advertised as thousands of teenagers hit the South West to celebrate the end of their schooling.

It comes as anti-vaccine mandate protesters on Monday picketed registration areas where teens were queued up to register for celebrations.

Graduates will be required to show proof they have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose to enter official Leavers events. It’s the first WA event to mandate vaccinations.

The West Australian is aware of a number of events being held in Dunsborough and Busselton outside the auspices of Leavers organisers which will allow unvaccinated attendees. Some are being held at private homes.

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Only 10,000 tickets were offered to the official events, meaning some late-comers will be shut out of the entertainment zones. The allocation of tickets was exhausted by 10am Monday.

A Busselton husband and wife stationed themselves on the Dunsborough Foreshore by the COVID-19 pop-up clinic displaying anti-mandate signs and talking to teens as they walked by.

The woman, who is a mother of an unvaccinated leaver and who declined to give her name, said it was upsetting her son couldn’t join in on the celebrations over an “experimental” vaccine.

“We’re not anti-vaccine, we’re anti-mandate, us and all our children are all fully vaccinated for everything else,” she said.

“This vaccine is too experimental, there’s so many side effects and people are dying from those side effects.

Inspector Martin Foyer said more than 70 officers would be patrolling the Capes to ensure the safety of leavers and the community.

“We expect people to protest peacefully and any protest ... will be properly policed,” he said.

“Our leavers and other community members will be properly protected if necessary.

“There will be, because of registrations closing, some unofficial gatherings and if the party they had at my hotel last night is anything to go by they will be orderly, enjoy themselves and get to bed tonight at a more reasonable time.”

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