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Rockingham council to vote on anti-vax motions after dismal special electors’ meeting turnout

Rockingham councillors will vote next month on three motions about the COVID-19 vaccine mandate passed at a special electors’ meeting on Tuesday night.

Less than 70 electors turned up at the Gary Holland Community Centre — well below the 150-person capacity limit for the night — to debate motions brought to the city by anti-mandate and anti-vax electors, including a request for the city to lobby the State Government for an end to mandatory vaccination.

The meeting came about after more than 100 electors signed a petition requesting a special electors’ meeting, forcing the council to host one under the Local Government Act 1995.

People at the meeting spoke about the effects of mandatory vaccination on residents and businesses and questioned the City of Rockingham’s performance of local government functions due to the mandate.

They asked the city to consider adopting a ‘pro-choice’ advocacy position to “provide leadership and guidance to the community”.

One motion passed at the meeting suggested no person should be “discriminated against on the basis of vaccination status”, “coerced or manipulated” into getting the vaccine or “restricted access to premises on the basis of vaccination status”.

At present, proof of vaccination is required for entry to premises including all hospitality venues, nightclubs, cinemas, gyms, aged care and hospitals, and major stadiums.

City of Rockingham Mayor Deb Hamblin said the meeting was “conducted in a respectful manner”.

“The three motions from the Special Electors Meeting that were supported by the majority of attendees will be presented to Council for consideration at the April 2022 Ordinary Council Meeting,” said Rockingham Mayor Deb Hamblin.

Several special electors’ meetings have been held in recent weeks across the metropolitan area and regional WA, including Fremantle, Mandurah, Busselton and Esperance.

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