Victoria Ambulance paramedic Allanah Jane said she witnessed “absolutely abhorrent” actions as demonstrators took to Melbourne streets to protests and blocked her from transporting a sick patient to the emergency department.
“He needed care at the emergency department in the city, and much to my dismay, our main pathway into the city – the West Gate Freeway – was blocked off by people that I can’t even begin to describe,” she wrote on Tuesday.
Construction workers march through the streets of Melbourne, blocking roads and setting off flares. Picture: Getty Images
“I had my blue and red lights on, pulled over to speak to a police officer who ran over and said that I could try to push through but it would be risky.
“Up ahead, there were thousands of protestors – protesting lockdowns, protesting masks and vaccines, calling for our premier’s resignation – and blocking traffic. Harassing passersby. Trashing innocent people’s vehicles. Throwing bottles of urine at passing cars. Setting off flares.
“This is the reason multiple ambulances were delayed attending unwell patients, and this is the reason we were delayed transporting ours. I moved forward, caught a glimpse of the thousands of selfish protestors ahead blocking traffic, and had to reverse up the freeway and physically turn my ambulance around.”
Stand-off between police and protesters ‘turning into a siege’
The 25-year-old said it took her one and a half hours to transport a patient – who needed emergency treatment – to the nearby hospital, which was only 10km away.
“All of these extra delays are to your family members, your friends. People genuinely needing attendance for emergencies,” she said.
“I have never been against peaceful protests, against union action or against the human right to free speech. But this is actively impacting our patients. This is not a peaceful protest. This is impacting on the human right to equal healthcare.
“We were not the only ambulance stuck in today’s (Tuesday) traffic. Should any of those patients have terrible outcomes because of delays to us attending or delays to definitive care, who will be to blame?”
Victoria Police respond to protesters
Protests broke out in response to the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for the construction industry on Monday and the subsequent shut down of the sector in areas under lockdown.
Police Deputy Commissioner Ross Guenther said 215 arrests were made on Wednesday after hundreds converged on the city’s  Shrine of Remembrance war memorial.
“To those that think this type of action is okay, can I just remind everyone that our primary role as police officers everyday is to protect the broader community,” he said.
“It’s difficult to do our best in that regard when so many of our people are pulled away from their regular work to address this issue.   
“Importantly we’re also trying to protect those in healthcare that are managing the impact of the pandemic. We don’t want to make their work any harder than it already is.”
Victoria recorded 766 cases of COVID-19 on Thursday – its highest daily cases since the pandemic began, and four deaths.
NED-3889-Melbourne-lockdown-restrictions

Recommended Posts

No comment yet, add your voice below!


Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *