NSW council takes stand against anti-vax bus

The City of Newcastle has vowed to ban a group of anti-vaccination activists from holding any events in its local government area.

Mayor Nuatali Nelmes

Members of the Australian Vaccination-risks Network are taking the group’s anti-vax message out to members of the public in a bus tour stopping at centres around the state.

The bus is scheduled to land in Newcastle later this month.

In a Facebook post on Wednesday Newcastle Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said public health experts say the group spreads misinformation about the risks of vaccines and COVID-19.

She says she has written to NSW Police Commissioner and the NSW health minister asking them to “use the full force of their powers” to ban the event from Newcastle and NSW.

Newcastle’s Mayor has made Council’s position clear on Facebook

“City of Newcastle will not tolerate the spreading of dangerous misinformation about public health matters,” she said.

“We will ban the event, and any anti-vaccination events, from occurring on any of our land, or at any of our facilities, and will take enforcement action if any unapproved events take place in our City.”

AVN convener Merly Dorey told Government News the visit would go ahead and that she believes people opposed to vaccination have a right to tell their stories in a public forum.

“We plan on going to Newcastle,” she said.

The Australian Medical Association says science has shown that vaccination saves lives and improves public health, and warns that spreading false and dangerous misinformation about the risks of vaccination can be deadly.

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