Vaccines in the Local News and AVN Update

This little article comes from the February 23rd edition of the “Eastern Reporter”, the local community newspaper in my slice of Perth. I’ll be keeping an eye out for anything science or pseudoscience related in future issues and reporting my thoughts.

Not really a whole lot to say on this one, just pleasing to see something pro-vaccination in the media. It’s not even all that surprising and it’s sometimes easy to forget that most people seem to be largely sensible, mature, intelligent and generally pro-science. Like most issues it’s the vocal minorities who tend to have the loudest voice, amplifying gradually as you diverge from the mean until a sudden decrease in amplitude once you enter timecube territory.

Perhaps this caught my eye in particular as it comes hot on the heels of the deceptively titled “Australian Vaccination Network” appearing the be on the verge of collapse. For those of you who weren’t aware the AVN (headed by Meryl Dorey) is the stronghold of the anti-vaccination movement in Australia since it was founded in 1994. Since that time they have launched a continual mis-information campaign spreading dangerous lies and paranoid conspiracy thinking under the guise of “public awareness”.

Click to read open letter to parents from the Australian Skeptics

Even the title of their organization is deceptive, why can’t they just call themselves what they are, the “Australian Anti-Vaccination Network”. Just last year in 2009 a complaint was filed by Ken McLeod in conjunction with the Australian Skeptics against the organization to the New South Wales Health Care Complaints Commission. In addition to this the Australian Skeptics published an excellent advertisement in “The Australian” last year providing an evidence based retaliation to claims of the AVN and a plea to the parents of Australia.

Hopefully the AVN will be closing it’s doors for good in the very near future, which will be a big win for science based medicine in Australia. The latest news I could find concerning the demise of the AVN comes from this update by the “Stop the AVN” group:

“DESPITE our efforts, the AVN will remain open… for now. There is pending legal action yet to happen and if Meryl thinks the fight is over, she’s mistaken. The AVN is on its last legs and with any luck, won’t survive the year.

AVN TO CLOSE! Meryl Dorey has announced that the AVN will close at the end of February unless a massive influx of money is found, or someone else steps forward to take over the organisation. The HCCC is days away from releasing their findings, the OLGR has ordered a full on-site audit of the AVN, a complaint has been filed with ASIC and there is also other legal action pending against the AVN and Meryl Dorey, who has described us as “a thorn in the AVN’s side.”

For more information regarding the harmful lies being spewed by the AVN in particular those of their figurehead and vocal leader Meryl Dorey follow these links:

I’ll leave you with this on-record quote from Meryl Dorey concerning her views on vaccinations and doctors:

“There will come a time – I pray to God that it will happen in my lifetime – when those who have pushed vaccines upon innocent, helpless babies – doctors, pharmaceutical companies, government officials – will be proven to have lied and cheated these instruments of death into our children’s bloodstream. When that occurs, the outcry will be heard around the world and there will not be enough hiding places on the globe for these murderers to hide or enough money to pay for compensation. Of course, it will be too late for the babies, like this poor child, to be saved. But we will be able to take satisfaction from the fact that never again will anyone have to be pushed to poison their child because for once and for all, it will be known as poison and we will all wonder how it was we fell for the vaccine lie for as long as we did.”

One Response to “Vaccines in the Local News and AVN Update”

  1. skylark Says:

    What a brilliant open letter – this is the point of sceptical societies – to educate and save lives in the process!

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