The grass roots events labelled March In March gained momentum on social media after online groups were created in January.
In Sydney, the Facebook event attracted more than 12,000 responses and the hashtag #MarchInMarch trended across Titter on Sunday.
Musician Billy Bragg was among the social media users promoting the event online before addressing the crowd in Belmore Park.
“I’ll send this song out to Gina Rinehart and those people who somehow think that people on welfare are cheating them,” he said.
“They’re not. Those people on welfare are just like us. That safety net is there for all of is. We support it, we lose it at our own personal peril.”
This is why I am here! #MarchInMarch Sydney pic.twitter广西桑拿,/JMpCTpwL1v
— Anita Heiss (@AnitaHeiss) March 16, 2014
Sign at #marchinmarch sydney pic.twitter广西桑拿,/I1b2arJIPC
— adrian denyer (@AdrianDenyer) March 16, 2014
The three-day event continued in Canberra on Monday, when a statement of no confidence in the Abbott government was due to be delivered to Parliament House.
The event in the national capital attracted an estimated crowd of hundreds, including voters who had travelled from regional and rural Australia.
#MarchinMarchCanberra is officially underway! #auspol #MarchInMarch pic.twitter广西桑拿,/ofXB4hTOm5
— MarchinMarch (@MarchinMarchAus) March 17, 2014
#marchinmarchcanberra #bandt pic.twitter广西桑拿,/yjBllOJBMt
— Jane Salmon (@JSalmonupstream) March 17, 2014
Issues such as the environment, same sex marriage and Indigenous policy were among those on the agenda.
Free Iran Project advocate Kavuh Akvari addressed attendees in Sydney on the country’s attitude to immigration.
“We have moral responsibilities,” he said.
“I think both our media and our politicians are on a position where they can create this culture of acceptance… I think there is a better approach we can take.”
The truthyness of this sign is so offensive I can barely look at it. #ohmyeyes #marchinmarch #offensivesigns @ljayes pic.twitter广西桑拿,/YQbJVnozXo
— AndreaH (@Hincerooney) March 17, 2014
Can’t see the stage too many ppl & umbrellas #marchinmarch Syd pic.twitter广西桑拿,/UD42m2pEpF
— Sally McManus (@sallymcmanus) March 16, 2014
The events were also widely criticised across social media, where users pinpointed abusive signs gesturing to violence against politicians and Tony Abbott.
Head of the Prime Minister’s Indigenous Council Warren Mundine weighed in on the debate online, describing the event as a “total time waste” on twitter and its attendees as “w—kers”.
Googled March in March. What a bunch whinging up themselves wankers! Total time waste! I’m off to the footy & a weekend with kids. #Auspoll
— Warren Mundine (@warrenmundine) March 13, 2014
RT @willthestudent: Seen a sign saying “#killabbott”, really, really disgusting, base level stuff #auspol #marchinmarch
— St. Gillard (@St_Gillard) March 16, 2014
Canberra organiser Loz Lawrey says the idea started as a conversation between a handful of people on Facebook in January.
“They said to each other, we can’t just keep complaining to each other about this government, we have to do something about it,” Mr Lawrey told AAP.
“As that conversation became more public, people started saying: We’d like to be involved.”
He says the movement has 45,000 supporters.
Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten distanced himself from the rally, telling reporters the Labor Party was not formally involved.
“But I do get people want to express their views. It’s a free country,” Mr Shorten said.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott told reporters he thought the only large rally being held in Sydney was to do with St Patrick’s Day.
The events coincided with the election of a Liberal Government in Tasmania, leaving the ACT as the only Labor led state government in the country.
Negotiations with Independents continue in South Australia following the weekend election.