Protesters wearing high-vis construction clothing smashed windows, chanted “We are union!” and “F**k the jab,” and threw projectiles at the Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) headquarters. Union officials attempted to barricade the doors and used a fire extinguisher to spray demonstrators from inside.
Others tried to diffuse the situation, waving their hands in the air and shouting for those engaged in the violence to stop, but to no avail. Melbourne riot police eventually turned up to the scene and approached protesters in formation carrying shields, batons, and guns.
Protesters shouted “Freedom” and “F**king w**ker” at police officers, while one man appeared to threaten a Ruptly journalist who was recording the scene.
Following the incident, CFMEU National Construction Secretary Dave Noonan blamed the violence on “far-right extremists,” claiming that the crowd “was heavily infiltrated by neo-Nazis and other right-wing extremist groups” and that only “a minority of those who participated were actual union members.”