Anti-vaxxers spread dangerous message in baby products
DANGEROUS anti-vaxxer propaganda is repeatedly being distributed in baby products for unsuspecting mothers to find across multiple stores in Roma.
Mother-of-two, Jessikah-Lee Brand was horrified when she opened a box of nappies she purchased from Woolworths Roma and found a card stating 'There's no such thing as a "safe" vaccine," had been slotted into the packaging.
"I was pretty angry, as parents we make our own decisions whether we vaccinate or not," Ms Brand said.
"You're buying a product for your children so to have that sort of propaganda shoved in your face is really not good.
"The last thing mothers want is someone telling them what to do with their kids - so I don't appreciate them trying to force their opinions on me.
"And we don't know where these cards have come from, and now they're coming in contact with products we are giving our children."
Manager of Health Plus chemist Roma, Deb Smith said her store has had ongoing issues with anti-vaxxers placing flyers and cards over immunisation advertisements.
"We've found probably 20 or so over the last few weeks which have just gone straight in the bin," she said.
"We've also been finding them stuck to the sign advertising for immunisation."
Ms Smith said that until they saw the Facebook post on the Roma community discussion board, they hadn't realised the offenders had started tucking them into products, as well as targeting other stores.
"They have no right to do it, it's just such a silly thing to do and there's better way to go about it," she said.
"They're not winning any friends and they're just wasting their cards because as soon as we find them, they go straight into the bin.
"We've just found them everywhere, that verges on vandalism."
Ms Smith says her staff have now been keeping a close eye on the baby section and she plans on reviewing CCTV footage which she will take to Roma police.
"It's just annoying, if people see this card and then decide not to vaccinate their children, it can raise a lot of potential issues," she said.
Immunisation levels have been a cause for concerns, with analysis of Federal Health data last year revealing dismal statistics for children in parts of Queensland receiving the full array of childhood vaccinations.
In 2019 Health officials voiced their concerns after data revealed immunisation rates plunged to below "herd immunity" levels in towns and cities across Queensland.
Australian Medical Association Queensland vice president Chris Perry said he was amazed that parents were not vaccinating their children against Polio.
"If Polio comes in it would spread like wildfire. It would be a disaster," he said.
Dr Perry said there was only a moderately small risk of its return, but "if it comes back in, those people are in trouble".
Despite receiving one of the cards, Ms Brand continues to be a firm believer in vaccinations.
"I like to hope that's it just a pathetic attempt to get their views across, but I know there are some young mothers who might believe anything they hear and see," she said.
"I would be really sad to find out someone had received one of these cards and then felt like they shouldn't be vaccinating their children.
"People are tampering with products they shouldn't be.
"This person or persons needs to be stopped."
And she's not the only one to receive one of the controversial cards in a baby product in Roma.
Another mother received a 'Protect me, don't inject me' anti-vaccination card in her cleansing eyes wipes for babies and children that she purchased from Health Plus Chemist, while another woman said she found one in her box of baby crackers.