OPINION: Pushing anti-vax propaganda on parents is not OK
WHILE I am a firm believer in vaccinations, it would be unfair for me to state that I don't believe everyone has the right to make their own decision when it comes to vaccinating their children.
However, what I definitely don't agree with, is anti-vaxxers thinking they have the right to shove their propaganda in the faces of parents, and in the most sneaky way possible - by tampering with baby products.
Coming off the back of an article I posted last week about anti-vaxxer propaganda repeatedly being distributed in baby products for unsuspecting mothers to find across multiple stores in Roma, I was shocked with all the attention it attracted.
The post absolutely blew up with comments from an anti-vax legion praising the efforts of whoever was behind the obnoxious act, seeing nothing wrong with the fact they were tampering with baby products, as in their eyes they were only 'educating' and 'informing' parents about the "dangers" of vaccinations.
"Dangerous message? You mean, honesty?" and "They should be giving a big 'THANK YOU' to the person trying to wake them up!" were just some examples of the hundreds of comments that sparked pure rage in me.
While I am not a parent myself, I can only imagine the difficulty involved with being a new mum or dad and getting a flood of information from others about the 'right' and 'wrong' way to raise your child.
But then to open a box of nappies or baby crackers and to find a card saying 'there is no such thing as a safe vaccine,' or 'protect me, don't inject me,' with a photo of a baby is honestly sickening.
It is NEVER okay to force your opinions on someone, no matter how strongly you feel about an issue.
And it would make me really sad to find out a parent had received one of these cards and then felt like they shouldn't be vaccinating their children - an action that would go against all medical advice.
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".
If you decide to not vaccinate your own children, then that is your decision to make.
But every other parent deserves that same right to make their decision without unwanted information being shoved in their faces.