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More of your letters to Woodford

Dear Woodford Folk Festival Organisers,

I would like to offer my support to the vaccination information seminar that you will be holding at the Woodford Folk Festival.

I am a parent to a 2 ½ year old girl, who I love dearly and cherish with all of my heart. One of the biggest issues that I have had to deal with in her 2 ½ years is whether or not I choose to vaccinate. I have researched and read so much information for both the pros and cons on this subject and the only organisation that is willing to answer my questions with much knowledge and honesty and WITHOUT ANY HATE regardless of whether I choose to vaccinate or not has been the AVN. I am so thankful that Meryl is providing a voice for ME to be able to make an informed decision about MY child.

I am all about PRO-CHOICE and in order to make an informed decision I need to hear both sides of the vaccination issue and I would hope that all parents would want to take the opportunity to educate themselves in this subject. So I would urge you to ensure that Meryl is allowed to stay on and present her seminar. There is a reason why parents are starting to question vaccinations! Having attended Meryl’s seminar in the past, you will see she is professional, honest and very knowledgeable and most of all you will see that her words come from a place of concern and love for children and parents alike.


Dear Woodford Supporter,

Freedom of choice is something that many people take for granted, whether it’s the choice of which supermarket to spend our dollars with, which doctor to see, which member of parliament to vote for or which airline to use for our next vacation.

The thing that makes this freedom of choice possible is the information that each supplier provides, whether it’s brands carried by a store, ethics of a multinational chain, the training and beliefs of a general practitioner, the policies and views of your local parliamentary representative or the cost and availability of flights to Bali this weekend.

Imagine for a moment if the ABC were not permitted to advertise or promote its programmes. Imagine if politicians had no way of telling their electorate what their views were; which issues they stood for. Imagine if people didn’t realise they had a choice in wastewater treatment options, couldn’t find out how much Qantas flights are until they paid, had no way of knowing if their doctor was pro-choice.

Stop the AVN seem to condone this form of censorship, and their smear campaigns and threats to boycott sponsors of the Woodford Folk Festival screams of vulnerability. It appears to me that they are scared that people might get another view point that doesn’t fit in with what they believe. The thing with people is we believe all sorts of things, but none of us have the right to force our beliefs on others, whether it’s through duress or, as is the case in this situation, censorship of alternatives.

I urge you, as a prominent sponsor of this event, not to allow their threats to cause valuable information covering the other side of the vaccination issue from reaching people. For a truly open and honest society, people must be given the opportunity to make an informed decision, and giving in to Stop the AVN would be detrimental the the supply of a balanced set of information.

While I choose not to vaccinate, I based on information from years of study of scientific and peer-reviewed findings, as well as a thorough understanding of the human immune system, I won’t discuss the validity of either side of this debate, as I strongly believe that this is not the issue.

The issue here is that I believe vaccination is not the way and some people think it’s the only way. We both have a right to our beliefs, but Stop the AVN want to stop others from hearing my views. If we only know one way, we will believe there is no other option. And if that happens, we don’t have informed choice any more.

I will leave you with one closing thought; imagine if the premise that the sun revolves around the earth was never challenged.




Dear Bill and Ingrid,

I am so very grateful that you have chosen to have Meryl Dorey as a speaker at your festival. I realise that this must have taken a lot of courage in the first instance, and I beg that you hold your ground now. There is enormous pressure on you right now but please know in your hearts that you are doing the right thing by allowing Meryl to speak.

If governments, doctors, etc were forthcoming with ALL the information about vaccinations groups like the AVN would not exist. Indeed if vaccines were so profoundly “safe” the AVN would not exist. The AVN exists because thousands of vaccine victims are testament to the fact that all vaccines carry a risk; and the victim list continues to grow every day.

I do not vaccinate my children. With their long list of allergies and intolerances they are in the high risk group for vaccine reactions. Incidentally they are also the healthiest children in the district.

All their fully vaccinated counterparts are seemingly always sick and on the antibiotic merry go round.

I have a university Science degree. I was indoctrinated well with all the pro-vaccine arguments. Unfortunately for the powers that be I can read and I can think, which they would prefer I didn’t do. Vaccines are NOT safe and are NOT effective, but they ARE highly toxic. No longer can any of this be denied.

From the bottom of my heart I thank you very,very much for allowing Meryl to speak at the festival. I just wish I lived closer so I could attend.

True courage and strength of character are rare is todays world; thank you for displaying such large quantities of both.

Yours in support of freedom of information


Dear Bill.

I am shocked that there should be ANY objectors to the Australian Vaccination Network’s well known Meryl Dorey, being hamstrung in any way with the dissemination of information of the Values (?) shortcomings and other nasties of mass vaccination.

Quite apart from this is of course, the knowledge gained from these presentations MUST also help worried and caring parents to make an informed choice on whether to vaccinate or not.Let us not forget the ENORMOUS profits for the pharmaceutical industry (and others..guess who?) would profit from the continuation of the ignorance of parents by these worried and confused people.     Free speech…free choice..what is all this talk of “Democracy” for our people’

Woodford MUST accept this presentation in the name of “Free” choice……are we all ignorant cabbages?

Thank you and the Compliments of the Season to you and yours.




In support of the right to choose to vaccinate or not

I was only vaccinated when I was 6 as my family history is one of an allergic reaction to immunizations but due to not being raised by either natural parent only found out at the age of 28 and had given my son one needle to which he had a reaction and has not been vaccinated again.

If I can have a written guarantee it will not cause any permanent damage we would not need to be writing in support

God Bless


Dear madam/sir,

Why I chose NOT to vaccinate my 3 children who are all now in this day with perfect “natural health and immunity” at  9, 11 and 14 years of age.

I read much over the years “before and after” their births (home births) about the “pros and cons” of vaccination. As a personal trainer who has been in the health and fitness industry for over 33 years I made an “intelligent, responsible and informed choice” for the benefit of my children’s future health and wellbeing NOT to vaccinate them.

Everything I read from Meryl Dorey (a friend and home birth attendant to my two youngest kids) and the Australian Vaccination Network (AVN) and other well respected medical and scientific journals since 1994 “rang alarm bells and flashing lights” for me concerning the “dangers and serious permanent side effects” of vaccination drugs which I discovered are comprised entirely of “many highly toxic chemical substances” and therefore totally foreign and toxic to the health and wellbeing of the human physiology and immune system – which has evolved to perfection over the past 4 million years of human evolution.

As an intelligent and informed sentient being it would have been a totally “irresponsible duty of care” for me as a responsible concerned and informed parent to vaccinate my children knowing of the toxic ingredients and side effects of these “independently and scientifically UNPROVEN” toxic vaccination drugs. Very sadly and “very unnecessarily”, as history and “independent medical and scientific evidence” has repeatedly proven – “vaccination drugs have very serious mental and physical side effects or death to adults and children.”

Success always leaves clues and the simple observation and study of EVERY “native culture” prior to the introduction of pharmaceutical drugs/vaccinations (less than 100 years ago) reveals that they ALL lived in perfect health and wellbeing. We only have to look in our own backyard at the “tribal originals” who prior to the invasion of the “white man” reveal a 40,000 plus year historical and DNA record of absolutely NO diseases of any kind…

They did NOT suffer from any of the rampant and “skyrocketing lifestyle diseases and primary killers” we see every day in adults, children and “even domestic pets” such as heart and hormonal disease, cancer, alzheimers, impotence, obesity, the common cold and not even a record of tooth decay… And unless they were “speared or choked on a roo tail” ,,, like all the other native cultures they lived long healthy and vibrant lives.

WHY didn’t they suffer from ANY of theses “lifestyle diseases”???

Because they had natural health and immunity endowed to ALL sentient beings by “our creator and mother nature” and they were totally free from ANY medical and pharmaceutical intervention… Like most intelligent beings I do not believe that “the creator and mother nature” made any mistakes or errors in the evolution and perfection of the human body

It is therefore universally self evident and blindly obvious that only through the interference of the “creators natural process” and with the introduction of the UN-NATURAL vaccination drugs and other pharmaceutical interference and peoples total ignorance and self-responsibility of “the original human diet and nourishment” for the human body and immune system – that we see the lifestyle diseases of this very day despite the fact that we are living in the most technologically advanced time of human history.

It is no coincidence that in the last 100 years ALL of these lifestyle diseases have and CONTINUE to increase in “direct correlation” to the introduction of pharmaceutical vaccination drugs, financial incentives to doctors and the corporate “profit at all costs” of the medical  and pharmaceutical cartels…. I therefore support totally Woodford and their sponsors for allowing this very important issue to be aired through freedom of communication thereby allowing others and concerned parents to make an “intelligent, responsible and informed choice” about the future health and well being of their children..



To the Woodford festival team,

i just wanted to thank you for offering the woodford community the opportunity to hear both sides of the Vaccination issue by inviting the AVN’s Merly Dory as a guest speaker.

I am a mother of a beautiful healthy and strong unvaccinated 2 year old and the aunty of 2 very strong and health unvaccinated adults. There are many reasons that we have decided not to vaccinate our children, too many to go into now, but in brief the risk of vaccine injury and possible side effects and messing with our immune systems and bodies by injecting toxins and diseases into our babies is too much of a risk for us. There are not enough independent studies on the effects of vaccination to truly know how it is affecting the human race, and the studies that have been done have been funded by the vaccine manufacturers themselves.

I find it difficult to understand that although we live in a country that allows us to make the decision on whether or not to vax our children, any attempt to speak out about the danger and risks of vaccination are stifled not giving people the opportunity to a fair and balanced view on vaccination. Look at the controversy surrounding your event simply by inviting Meryl Dory to speak, what has happened to freedom of speech and living in a democracy??

I commend you for inviting Meryl Dory to your festival, we all have the right to make our own choices on the matter and the right to as much information possible to make an informed choice.

The AVN is a great network available for people to go to for support, information and facts on the vaccination topic, they are doing an amazing job with guiding people on their journey in making an informed decision.

Unfortunately i am unable to attend the festival, however i would have loved to be able to attend even if just to hear Meryl speak.

I wish you great success with your festival and if Meryl will be attending again next year, i will be sure to attend.

Keep up the great work.



I just wanted to share my support in your initial decision to allow Meryl Dorey from AVN to present seminars at the Festival. Although some people might find the topic controversial, we live in a land of free speech and we should all have a right to voice a differing opinion. It would be up to the listeners to walk away and weigh up the options and make their own decision. What a controlling society we would live in if a proportion of the population had the capacity to sensor what the puplic could talk about.

Unfortunately I have not yet been able to attend the Folk Festival but from what I hear it is the perfect place to hold such presentations. I look forward to having a place to expand my thinking, question the status and be around people who enjoy the same in the future.

Kind Regards


Dear Bill

Many thanks for allowing the AVN to appear at the Woodford Festival. For too long government and big pharmaceutical companies have been peddling their vaccines without revealing the full side effects, toxins in the vaccines and long term effects on ours and our childrens health. The AVN are a responsible organisation who believe in telling the truth about vaccination so that everyone can make an informed decision. The AVN is not against vaccination, they just want to inform the public about the possible dangers involved so parents can decide what is best for their children.

Please do not let any anti AVN organisations use their bully-boy tactics to prevent this seminar from taking place. Freedom of speech is for everyone and this is a very important topic that has been supressed for way too long.

Kind regards


Dip RT, ND

To the Woodford Folk Festival Organisers,

Please, don’t let the “free speech police” interfere with your festival programming!

Dedicated individuals, like Meryl Dorey, are providing some balance so we can all make informed choices.  Global pharmaceutical companies are in the business of selling drugs – preferably with Medical Board and Government endorsements.  They also have the influence and financial resources to ensure they silence, or at best distort, any messages which question the safety of their products.

Occasionally, like in this instance, our Australian democratic right to free speech is challenged.

I strongly encourage you not to be bullied into altering your festival programming.



Dear Woodford Team,

I heard that you might be pressured by sponsors and the government to block an anti vaccination talk at Woodford?


Of all people/events/festivals I would expect Woodford and Woodfordians to fully embrace this important voice.

There is SO much evidence and insights out there that clearly demonstrates that we are all being duped by the powers that be

and this is all going at the expense of the health and wellbeing of young kids. It’s a disgrace.

Please Woodfordians…. rise up against this terror and allow Meryl to shine.

Not for her. Not for me. But for all of mankind.



I would be very disappointed if the vaccination talks were cancelled. These talks help parents to make an informed desion, they help people to hear both sides.

I have not vaccinated my son as an outcome to the research I have undertaken. There is so much push and drive to vaccinate that these talks also remind me why I have chosen not to vaccinate and renew my faith in my decision.

We currently and I hope it continues,  have choice to vaccinate therefore please help people make an informed one. People who have had a bad experience have a right to share their stories for those that choose to listen.

I work with children with ASD and epilepsy, and as many people say there is good and bad with vaccination and I often hear people say but the good out weighs the bad, maybe? But I work with a lot of the damaged children so I see a lot of the bad. And its too many to sweep under the carpet.

Please keep these talks, this is what Woodford is about, the truth! Not being black mailed.


Please allow the AVN to have freedom of speech..

I have chosen not to vaccinate my first two children who are 16 and 21.

I also have a child who is now one and he hasn’t even had a runny nose since he was born. His nutrition is perfect and he is still breast feeding and eating wholesome foods…

Instead of imposing on the immune system of the children, why not encourage more breast feeding and healthy living and improved nutrition… Of course this approach does not make money for the drug companies, that is why…..

There are countries throughout the world that do not agree with the drug companies approach to Business. We deserve the right to encourage both sides of the argument and freedom of speech.

I have colleagues at work that have personally witnessed challenges with their children’s health and they would never recommend vaccination to anyone….

The AVN has helped me significantly with update information that is not restricted by the multi billion dollar drug companies. What are they worried about except losing money…

We deserve the truth to be heard and freedom of our rights….



Hi Bill, 

I should imagine you are too busy to read this so close to the festival start date but I would like to endorse your invitation to allow Meryl Dorey to speak about vaccination on behalf of the many questioning doctors and scientists who are being silenced by the pro vaccination lobbyists throughout the world.

In my opinion Meryl is broadminded, highly knowledgeable about aspects of the vaccination debate most skeptics would prefer to ignore because it doesn’t fit into their truth system and as a Mother of a vaccine damaged child she is qualified as wise about the dangers of vaccination.

I was recently accosted by a pro vaccination lobbyist – during an unrelated medical visit with a new doctor at our local clinic  who refused my daughter medical treatment because i refused to concede on my well reasoned and researched choice to not vaccinate. With a cousin seriously brain damaged by vaccine and a child who had a serious  reaction to a vaccination shot i was forced to question the wisdom of the science.

I don’t oppose the ideal of vaccination only that i consider it an incomplete science as it exists today. Any science that requires a certain percentage of the population be sacrificed for the good of the many is in my books a science that is in need of development and improvement.

Meryl speaks for those too intimidated to speak for themselves, lends reason to the vaccination debate and is highly credible despite the disparaging opinions of her  persecutors and the vilification of her good intention and character that she has endured over these past two years.

Silence the balanced voice of reason and the science stops evolving.

If we had silenced our questioning forefathers the earth would still be flat.

As a Western Australian we have made two family pilgrimages (all three generations of us including my 80 year old Dad) to the AWESOME Woodford Festival and tell everyone willing to listen that it is a wonderful platform for all avenues of social diversity. Give these bullies their way and they will have crushed the essence of Woodford.

Bless you Bill – may WFF 2011 be another successful event.


Thanks Bill!

I am delighted that you are having Meryl Dorey as a spokesperson this year at the festival.

After my son was diagnosed with Autism I started researching everything.

When I learned of the adverse effects of immunisation on some children words cannot express how angry I felt.

I couldn’t believe living in a country like Australia that I had not been informed of this before I vaccinated my child.

I myself was vaccinated as a child and had no adverse effects.
But both of my children have, my daughter very obviously when a huge lump appeared in her lymph nodes
in her armpit one week after her 6 month vaccination.

I believe in the right of an informed choice for the health of our children.

Please let Meryl speak, people have a right to know and make their own decision.



Dear  Ingrid,

My family and I are greatly looking forward to the festival this year. This will be my 8th or 9th festival.

I have greatly enjoyed hearing a wide range of natural therapies presenters who have ended up enriching my life over the years (Graeme Sait, Dr Carole Hungerford, Dr Sarah Buckley to name a few).

I have also discovered my favourite artists though the festival: Harry Manx, Riley Lee and Lindsay Pollack.

I have heard that there are powerful lobbyists trying to stop Meryl Dorey speaking. Meryl will be presenting one seminar and participating in a forum on toxicity (Thursday, December 29th from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM – Autism Emergency – 1 child in 38; Friday, December 30th from 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM – Forum on Toxicity – both at the Blue Lotus)

I am really looking forward to hearing her speak. I think it’s very important for freedom of speech. I really admired Woodford for having Dr Philip Niezche speak. Meryl is the same sort of speaker.

I am part of a group of families form the ‘Sydney Natural Parenting Group’ travelling up for the festival, many of which do not vaccinate their children because they are so well informed, thanks to independent, non-pharmaceutical or government interested people like Meryl speaking out. Woodford is sp special in providing a forum for discussion about such issues. I cant wait for the debate!

Could you please allow  Meryl to speak at the festival?


BM and family

The Vaccination issue:

I write to thank you for inviting Meryl Dorey to speak at your festival and confirm it is essential the public learn the “other side”  of the vaccination issue .

Meryl is an excellent speaker .. her aim is to enable parents to make an “informed choice” regarding vaccination .. to encourage them to “research” the pros and cons of vaccinations instead of blindly adhering to the limited information their GP gives them

I have worked in the medical profession all of my adult life and have met very many physicians who do not vaccinate their own children but because of peer pressure continue to vaccinate the children of “others” accepting payment along the way for so doing .. it is a brave physician whose ethics prevent them from following this path but I assure you there are many in this country who are aware of the adverse side effects of vaccinations and whose integrity spells out every aspect of vaccination to unwary and uninformed parents to give them every opportunity to make  an “informed choice”

Vaccinations are given on the first day of birth before the immune system is developed .. I refer to the Hep B vaccination now mandated for every child instead of those just at risk from an infected mother and for a child born with a compromised immune system this puts them on the downward slope .. followed by regular vaccinations which further weaken an already struggling immune system until at approx 14 months the child regresses completely, loses speach, awareness, cognition, no longer meets  their early childhood milestones and is subsequently diagnosed as being on  the Autism spectrum .. included in this spectrum are those children who are in severe pain, resulting in reactions of uncontrollable behaviour because they are unable to speak and say what hurts .. their poor parents at wit’s end do not know how to help them and at this stage wish they had been better informed !

I am surrounded by hundreds of children in whom this scenario has developed and it is a very very sad indictment on our Govt an our medical profession that they will not “listen” to parents and experts like Meryl Dorey who are all to familiar with the tragedy that has developed in the current generation of children and is set to increase with every passing year UNTIL common sense prevails and vaccinations are scaled back or given when the child is older and has developed a viable immune system better able to counteract the horrendous contents of vaccines .. especially those that are combined to cover multiple perceived illnesses

Meryl has researched for years and is perhaps the most informed person in this country .. she very much needs to be heard because it is only when a child experiences an adverse reaction to vaccines that the parents become aware of the inherent dangers and by then it is TOO LATE

One of my own grandchildren succumbed in this way .. tragic to witness  and appalling in the effect it had on parents .. subsequent grandchildren have not been vaccinated and are very healthy neurotypical children with strong immune systems because “informed choices” were made

If all parents in this country were aware and could make an “informed choice” I am positive the levels of autism and sickness in the current generation of children would vastly diminish .. yes there are other external factors why so many children now have health problems but there is more awareness of environmental toxins and no awareness of the dangers vaccinations  can present



To whom it may concern,

I write this email in support of Meryl Dorey’s appearance at the WFF this year.  I understand that there has been some debate or pressure applied to exclude her from the program.  While I would be astounded if the Folk Federation was actually considering such action, I wish to express my satisfaction with the Folk Festival and its sponsors for supporting the right of all people to educate themselves about numerous topics and issues that are presented and discussed during the festival.

I am a university academic and lecturer with a background in science and education.  I am currently completing my PhD thesis (in science education) and have a strong background in research.  I took an interest in the ‘vaccination debate’ five years ago when I was pregnant with my son.  To date, I have read over 100 books and articles (including peer reviewed studies from international journals) and visited numerous doctors and spoken to representatives from pharmaceutical companies to educate myself on the benefits or otherwise of vaccines.  The AVN provided information that allowed me to conduct further research to make an informed choice about this issue.

I have worked as a volunteer stage manager at the Woodford Folk Festival for the last 6 years, and look forward again this year to supporting this worldclass event and listening to educated and passionate individuals share their knowledge and expertise.

I congratulate the Woodford Folk Festival and its sponsors for supporting speakers such as Meryl Dorey and I look forward to the opportunity to hear Ms Dorley’s presentation.

Thank you for your time


BSc Bed


I understand that you are being pressured to disallow the AVN to share information at Woodford this year.

I would like to share my experience with you and tell you why I support the AVN.  About 5 years ago I had the yellow fever vaccination before going to Africa.  A few days later I experienced the worst fever in my life where I was talking gibberish and burning a 40 degree fever.  The doctor told me there was no way that it could have been caused by the vaccination.  About 12 years ago, I went to India and had every recommended vaccination.  I then stopped having periods for 10 months, got acne and could not control my weight.  All this was fixed when I got home and detoxed my system.

I now have a 2 year old and we moved to India when she was 14 months.  She has not had any vaccinations, and her health has been much better than mine or my husbands.

I know that everyone has their own story and everyone has to make their own choices.  I would not force anyone to or not to be vaccinated.  But I do appreciate that there is an organisation that provides me with the information that I need to make informed decisions for my family.

At no time has anyone at the AVN said do not vaccinate.  They just provide a balanced story and provide support to families that have vaccine damaged children.

And there must be some problems, otherwise the US and UK would not have government funded vaccine injury funds??

Please allow the AVN to share information at Woodford this year.


Dear Bill,

As a long time presenter in the childrens festival at our beloved Woodford I would like to express my support to let Meryl speak at this years festival.  I believe it is important to allow different and opposing point of view to be put forward in any discussion and hope you may feel the same.  I find it sad to hear that others are trying to stop her and her organisation.  People have a right to hear all information.

look forward to seeing you there

Best Wishes


Dear Bill,

I would like to offer my support for the AVN Group to provide information and statistics to the general public with regard to mass vaccinations.

I am 64 years of age and have come from an era where very little or no vaccinations were administered to babies/children.  During my childhood and teenage years I never came across a person who suffered symptoms of autism or problems associated with contacting the childhood illnesses that have left my generation with life immunity to these diseases.

Also, my grandson who is now 2 1/2 years of age has not been immunized at all and his is a very healthy and bright little boy.  He has been in contact with children with cold, throat and stomach viruses and has remained healthy.  It appears his immune system is growing strong as opposed to children who have had all their vaccinations.

These children, two in particular that I know of, have even had to be hospitalized because of their ill health.  (breathing difficulties, skin disorders etc)

This and my own childhood experience leads me to support what your group is telling us.

Naturally I do not discount all vaccinations as I believe there may at some time be a need for not only myself but for anyone who may require it for any reason.

Over the years I have found by my own experience that I have been able to research a situation before my health decisions were made.  I am a very healthy and fit senior citizen because I have taken the time to take care of my own health.  Minimal research has lead me to adhere to natural and organic remedies and I have found that because of this lifestyle I require very little medical intervention to maintain good health.

This is why I strongly believe in making available information and research data to the general public so that those of us who truly care about our own health and also that of the community in general can make our own choices.

Please persist in what you are doing because over time I am seeing that our lives are becoming more and more controlled by Government bodies that in a lot of cases are receiving recommendations that may not be in our best interests.

Thank you for your ongoing efforts to help us help ourselves.

With my best regards,


To whom it may concern,

My attention has been drawn to the scare mongering occurring due to the AVN presenting at the Woodford Folk Festival.

I am astonished in this day and age people are afraid of knowledge. What do Mamma Mia and the SAVN have to be afraid of? The AVN is pro choice and only presents information that is available anywhere if you look for it. This organization does nothing but present scientifically researched material in a concise practical matter that is useful for parents or people in general who wish to make an informed choice about vaccination.

We live in a democratic society that has free choice and freedom of speech. Everybody does have an opinion on vaccination, but at the end of the day that’s all it is and we must respect the rights of individuals to access information and to make an informed choice, regardless of our own viewpoint.

It is wrong to force your own opinion onto someone else or to block information.

The actions of SAVN and Mamma Mia seem fear based and present no logical reason for stopping Meryl and her team educating people about vaccinations.

Knowledge is power.

Yours sincerely


Dear Woodfordians,

I choose not to vaccinate myself or my children because of the numerous risks and the lack of any significant benefit, especially as we satisfactorily use homeopathic immunisation when needed (eg if we have come into contact with someone with pertussis.) Also for the sake of the community, we chose to build our immunity naturally and therefore contribute to our community rather than to contribute to the spread of significant diseases like pertussis through ineffective vaccination and compromised immunity.

Our children have not had any vaccinations. When I was a child I contracted a serious case of measles leading to encephalitis and temporary paralysis soon after I had the measles vaccination.

I have researched widely on vaccination and also on natural health and so make clear decisions on issues like vaccination.

The Australian Vaccination Network has helped by providing information (not my only source) and advocacy for citizens like myself whose choice is threatened. AVN conducts themselves appropriately.

I have attended the Woodford Folk Festival previously and think it is a wonderful place for a group like AVN to contribute to the atmosphere of community and discussion of what is important in sustainable and ethical living. The information AVN presents (and the way it is presented) is not threatening, it is simply what it is – information. In fact it is information that is crucial to make truly informed choice concerning vaccination and health (both personal and community).

Thank you for your time. I hope people attending the festival are able to attend such a useful session.

Yours sincerely,



Dear Bill, Ingrid, and other festival organisers,

I’m increasingly impressed and inspired by the job that the festival has done in opening people’s minds and hearts to other ways of thinking, acting, and being.  My son has travelled long distances to attend the festival on occasion.  I’m strongly tempted to attend it myself this time round if I can.

It’s a joy to me to know that you’ve invited Meryl Dorey, of the Australian Vaccination Network, to show another side of vaccination at the forthcoming festival.  It’s a side that is invisible to most of us; is almost never discussed in a rational and balanced manner in mass media even by medically qualified people; and is even, strangely, actively censored in the mass media.  And it’s become plain to me, through 31 years of interest and research in the area dating from before my first child was born, that it’s an important topic to bring into the open.

I’m aware that the hate organisation founded by Australian so-called skeptics specifically in order to destroy the AVN has been applying its usual tactics to the festival’s organisers in order to remove your choice to allow others a choice.  I trust that you plan to maintain your principles, but thought I should write to let you know that your courage under fire is widely valued.

Incidentally, I provided photography for a couple of national festivals this year; if I am able to attend, perhaps I could help out similarly (gratis) at Woodford.  If you’d be interested, please let me know.  I love the web site, by the way!

Kindest regards,


To the Woodford Folk Festival organisers 

I commend you for programming Meryl from the Australian Vaccination Network (AVN) to speak about the need for parents to do their own research about vaccination and make their own informed choices.  There is a misunderstanding in the community generally that vaccinating children is not a choice – the media and health authorities omit all other information – except to say ‘the benefits far outweigh the risks’ of vaccination.   

I have a family who follows natural health alternatives, we believe in supporting the body’s natural functions to come back to health.  We practice this by eating healthy, drinking filtered water, taking vitamins and minerals, and treating illness with homeopathics, herbs and tissue salts, as well as visiting practitioners of Chinese Medicine, massage and spinal alignment, Naturopathy and Western Medicine when necessary.  I have used Isaac Golden’s homeoprophelaxis treatments when there is has been Whooping Cough and Meningicoccol in the immediate community.  I feel safe and empowered when I take responsibility for my family’s health in this way.

My mother and grandmother never vaccinated their children either.  My partner’s parents did, but they were supportive of our choice not to vaccinate our children.  This was partly because I could provide evidence about the risks of vaccination and other information from the AVN including their magazine the personal stories of readers.  This information helped to confirm for them the story of their friend – a mother whose first two children developed autism – which she is 100% sure was caused by reactions from vaccinations (and her third child, whom she chose not to vaccinate, has remained healthy)

My thanks to the AVN for providing the information I needed to validate my beliefs about vaccination and discuss the issue with some level of authority when doctors and other mothers would question my choice.  I personally feel that our current medical system promotes too many unnecessary and unhelpful medical procedures.

My thanks to the Woodford Folk Festival and their sponsors for allowing the other side of the vaccination issue be heard.  Let us promote natural health options wherever we can and encourage people to take charge of their own health.  I believe you are well within your rights to do so, and your audiences are critical thinkers who will appreciate the information and debate.  You know your punters are interested in this – so don’t be bullied by the ‘skeptics’ who surely have motives, money and power to make their voice heard.

When we care for our selves and take personal responsibility for our choices we will surely raise the health of the broader community… Instead we have people feeling disempowered, ill-informed or ‘not clever enough’, and bullied into medical procedures, where we give over our power and responsibility to the ‘experts’: that is not the way to a healthier society.

You are allowing space for other voices – the voices of the People rather than the Institutions.  Congratulations.  Strength and courage to you as you stand by your belief in freedom, health, and choice.



Hi Festival Organisers

it’s been brought to my attention that you have received emails opposing the appearance of Meryl Dorey at your Festival.

In the interest of upholding the value of Freedom of Choice I would encourage you to disregard these emails and allow Meryl to talk at your Festival. What these opposing voices would like to achieve akin to censorship, a questionable goal, especially here in Australia.

Kind Regards


Dear festival organisers,

I would just like to add my total support for the AVN and Meryl Dorey to speak at your festival. I have a vaccine damaged child and I just wish I had had access to all the information prior to making the decision to vaccinate. Perhaps there are some simple questions that need to be asked, why is there no mandatory reporting of adverse reactions? Why is there no mandatory reporting of the vaccinations status of those presenting with the “vaccine preventable diseases”? We do not collect this data so how on earth do we know of their safety and efficacy?

Kind regards


To whom it may concern,

I am a proud mother of 2 beautiful girls, 3 and 1. I made the choice not to vaccinate my girls based on an immense amount of research I conducted myself and with the help of the AVN.

My nephew sadly had an adverse reaction to vaccination and now has a lifetime of dietary and allergy issues. He will not be receiving any follow up vaccines as his immunity is compromised.

I believe in informed choice, and not all mothers/families have the means or time to conduct their own research. This is why I believe that the AVN absolutely have the right and obligation to present information to the public based on sound scientific research.

It is important to remember to treat people like intelligent human beings and trust that they will make the right choices for themselves and family. Trying to keep people ill informed is just screaming that there is a bigger issue, what secrets need to be hidden from the public?????



To whom it may concern,

I write in regard to the Woodford Folk Festival.

Sadly we have case files filled with client history forms completed by parents of children who they claim were “typically developing” and following vaccination often the MMR they appeared to shut down with varying degrees from loss of language right through to completely detached.

These parents express they believe there is a direct link to their child’s vaccination and the resulting “damaged” child they are left to try and deal with. An enormous emotional and financial drain on their family.

Parents should be in an informed place to enable them to make informed choices on the wellbeing of their children. Let the people listen and form their own educated opinion.


Dear Woodford Festival organisers,

I am writing in support of Meryl Dorey, after recent attacks online in regards to her upcoming presentation at Woodford Festival.

Unfortunately I haven’t yet had the opportunity to attend Woodford Festival, but as a former employee of Kali Wendorf and Kindred magazine, I am very familiar with both the Woodford Festival and the AVN/Living Wisdom magazine and I greatly respect and admire the work that you both do.

I also believe in freedom of speech and freedom of choice and I sincerely hope that any pressure you might be feeling from recent events in the media does not make you change your mind about having Meryl appear at Woodford this year.

I only wish I could be there to hear her speak about such an important topic.

Kind regards,



To whom it may concern,

This short email is in response to information received regarding a request for the organisers of the Woodford Folk Festival to cancel the presentation by Meryl Dorey from the Australian Vaccination Network.

Our democratic society needs people like Meryl, with passion and knowledge to be able to provide information to those who require it.

I have a child with life threatening allergies, he cannot even touch a piece of bread, if he is sprayed with yoghurt at a school lunch break he could stop breathing, and if he inhaled any nuts or eggs the result could be fatal.

Having access to an organisation such as the AVN, gave my family the ability to conduct informed research into vaccinating our child.  Research that continues  to this day.

If organisations such as this are silenced, then persons like me, who have to live with children who are already struggling with “normal” daily living, would have no where to turn for accurate information and support.

Congratulations for allowing this organisation to be heard, your willingness and that of your sponsors to stay impartial towards such issues in our community will see you supported by many.



Don’t stop the information!

Please allow the A.V.N to share information about the possible negative side to vaccination so people can make their own decisions.Life is all about making choices and we do live in a free country. I have heard that the sceptic association is trying to block this from happening for some strange reason. regards E

We live in a free country, and freedom of speech used to be our Constitutional right or DO WE? I vaccinated my children who are now aged 24 to 31, 2 of them had reactions to vaccines but I was too young at the time to question this. One of my daughters has serve allergies to antibiotics and food allergies so I had to look at alternative Naturopathic treatments to keep her healthy. I found that by keeping them healthy naturally that they rarely got sick. I have been working in the natural therapies and supplement industry for approx 10 years now, and have changed my views drastically. None of my 8 grandchildren are vaccinated and I support my children with their decision. We choose to build, our children’s and our own immune system up with natural products and natural therapies. The only health issue they have had is colds and teething.

EVERYONE HAS THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE WHAT IS BEST FOR THEM and the right to research additional information.

How can an unvaccinated child harm a vaccinated child? If the parents believe in what they are doing, then they should have no concerns about their children catching a disease that they have been vaccinated against. My view is – how can pumping our bodies with harmful chemicals make us healthy?” Look at the rising rates of disease in our communities. If drugs work why are we becoming more unhealthy?? Back in ancient history, our medicines came from nature and overall our health was far better than it is now. Doctors don’t know what’s best for us all the time, they have been trained in drugs only. And yes, I go to my doctor for emergencies but I chose a doctor that combines natural and medical and he supports non vaccination and my choices to treat naturally first and he has not vaccinated his own children. Scientists develop drugs for drug companies to make huge profits, they don’t care if people are harmed. It’s all about mega profits. Why don’t scientists research natural alternatives, because there is no money in it for them? They can’t patent nature!!!! Doctors have continuing education from WHO?? Drug companies, so how on earth can they be neutral, the majority anyway.

I have been choosing natural therapies over drugs for the past 20+ years since my daughter could not take antibiotics and many other medications. So, I have been researching natural alternatives since she was a small child. I’m pleased to say she is a healthy adult and drug free.

My eight grandchildren are all healthy and do not have the health issues that their little friends contract and have never had to take antibiotics. They range in age from 4weeks to 6 years old.

I have attended many AVN seminars and have found the information excellent. This organisation gives people information on alternatives to stay healthy. We should all have the choice to deal with our health in the way that we feel is best for us.

I have always seen Woodford Festival as an alternative Festival, healthy living and healthy choices. It would be a great shame that your management committee buckles under the pressure from one section of the community’s narrow viewpoint. I support Woodford and their sponsors for allowing this issue to be aired.



Good morning

I’m writing this email to show my support for Meryl Dorey and the AVN.

I believe it is extremely important for all Australians to have a choice about their health and the health of their children and family – especially concerning Vaccination.

My eldest child is 14 this year and i have been researching and reading about Vaccination for that long. It disturbs me that our choices could one day be removed and it become compulsory to vaccinate. An act that i find disturbing and unhealthy and dangerous.

I have had an experience with my now 9 year old who is unvaccinated where a nurse in our local emergency department asked my permission to give my son the Tetanus vaccine after he had burnt himself. I informed them i would consider it after i do some research, where i was then looked at and sneered at and spoken about and pointed at from the nurses quarters. They were very pushy with me and tried their hardest to talk me into it. It was a “booster” injection. I declined the shot and when i got home i called the AVN’s direct info line and spoke to a lady who informed me, after reading the information from the fact sheet directly from the vile, that “if not previously vaccinated, DO NOT ADMINISTER, WILL cause cardiac arrest and death”

I owe my sons life to the AVN and Meryl Dorey.If it wasnt for their hard work and dedication to this issue, i wouldnt be as informed as i am and my son may not be with me today.

I have been a member and/or follower of the AVN for many years and i am very grateful that we have Meryl standing up for peoples choice.

If you chose to exclude her from speaking at Woodford because of 1 particular fearmungering group of people, then what is woodford really about?

In this day and age, it helps to be as educated and informed as possible. Please keep Meryl at Woodford. Everyone has a human right to hear every side of every story. This issue needs to be spoken about!

Thank you for your time


Dear Woodford Folk Festival organisers, 

I am writing to request that Meryl Dorey’s planned appearances at the 2011-2012 Woodford Folk Festival will go ahead.

It is very important that free speech and freedom of choice continue to be acknowledged, respected & upheld in our communities.

I’ve heard via the AVN that the organisation SAVN are currently denigrating Meryl Dorey and the AVN for being booked to speak at this upcoming community Festival.

I have one son & I have chosen freely to vaccinate selectively and this should remain entirely each parents/family’s choice.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion and it amazes me there is so much energy invested to stop the freedom of speech,opinion and choice by organised internet blogs & Facebook pages

for issues such as vaccination.

It is a contentious issue and the number one aim is to keep our children safe and healthy. Yet there are many reports both via my immediate network and those i read about or hear about where

children have a very adverse reaction to vaccines. Let’s just say the vaccines used today are NOT for everyone’s children and nor should that ever be imposed upon anyone as compulsory.

I have a great respect for the AVN and I continue to believe we all should be allowed the freedom of choice when it comes to injecting vaccines into ourselves and our children.

The AVN always maintains they are pro information and NOT anti vaccination. They are presenting the risks of vaccination which there are some of course.

I believe that a threat made to boycott the Woodford sponsors & to attempt to censor healthy discussions of vaccine information & matters is both immoral & unjust.

The Woodford Folk Festival has been known for years to be a collective of creative expression for artists, poets & workshop/discussion forums.

Please continue to have this variety of presentation & to rejoice in the freedom of expression in this country.

Kind regards,


Dear Council Members

It has been brought to my attention that there are some who may have contacted you regarding Meryl Dorey of the AVN who will be speaking at the Woodford Folk Festival. Please try to disregard the negative and hateful comments they are making about her. EVERYONE has the right to speak their mind, even if some do not agree with what is being said. Meryl is an intelligent, articulate and passionate person who possesses a wealth of knowledge on the vaccination issue. Her talks convey the less publicised but very real ‘down’ side of vaccination- information for all people to hear to make their own decision. This is not a censored dictatorship we are living in is it?

Please support her right to speak and other’s right to listen, or not.

Thank you



Letters to Woodford and sponsors part 2

Below are more letters that our wonderful, positive, intelligent and creative members have sent in to the Woodford festival and their supporters.

I have just had a thought about all of this that I wanted to share with you. There are over 400 performers and speakers at Woodford this year. I don’t know if that is about average or high or low, but let’s assume that every year, there are at least that many. Many of those performers and speakers are controversial – Philip Nitschke, a raft of politicians from all political viewpoints, comedians etc.

When sponsors give money to Woodford and when Woodford has these performers and speakers at the event, are they endorsing what they say or are they just having them there because they are interesting and people want to hear what they say or view their act? Are sponsors supporting each individual performer or are they simply supporting the Festival as a whole?

I believe they are supporting the Festival and these attempts to make them withdraw their support because of one speaker who some people disagree with equals censorship – plain and simple.

Not only that, but the idea of running this sort of action to prevent someone expressing a point of view on a political issue is frightening in any democracy. Today, we are told we can’t discuss the downside of vaccination in case someone listens and decides it might not be for them. Tomorrow, it could be education we’re no longer allowed to discuss, or nuclear power, or whaling or any other issue with strong pros and cons. Think about it.

Next, I am having trouble keeping up with blogging all of these letters and that’s great! I still haven’t counted how many there are but it is well over 100. I have a large number sitting in my inbox that need to be put up on our blog and I will get to them soon. But if you haven’t written, please do take the time (look at the next blog post for the details). We need to get overwhelming support – not just for the AVN – but for the Woodford Folk Festival as well. This is such a worthy group – they need all our help. Please continue to copy me into your responses at

AVN – let them be heard at Woodford

To Whom It May Concern

I want to thank you for putting Meryl Dorey from the Australian Vaccination Network (AVN) on the program this year. I realise that this is a very emotive and contentious area and that there will be many people who do not want her to speak.

It is vital that the facts about vaccination are available for everyone to make an informed choice. The AVN provides much needed information on latest research and findings about the efficacy and the risks associated with vaccines.

I would like you to know that the AVN is fantastic volunteer organization that has helped my family (and many others) as we run the gauntlet of mainstream media and medical systems with questions about vaccines and their associates reactions and damage.

Meryl is determined, passionate and fair in her resolve to give parents factual information about vaccination.  I know her research gives me continued zeal in making the best possible health choices for my family.  Please allow Meryl to share her message with the folks at Woodford in 2011.



AVN discussion at Woodford

Hi all,

It has been brought to my attention that there is opposition to Meryl Dorey from AVN speaking at Woodford this year.

I fully believe and promote freedom of speech as a basic human right for all and can only encourage you to have the courage to stand in the face of the opposition and allow those who wish to attend the discussions to do so.

I have been a homebirth midwife for nearly 30 years and have often directed inquiring parents to the AVN to gain information about vaccination prior to making any decisions around the issue.

I am also the mother of four (now adults) who were not vaccinated as children and are all supremely healthy beings.

Please stand strongly and do not allow the AVN’s voice to be gagged. The community need to be able to hear both sides of the vaccination debate prior to making possibly life-changing decisions for their babies and children.

Yours for a free speaking community,



There is a real need in the community for information on the other side of the vaccination issue.

Stop the AVN (SAVN)  are once again trying to censor this side of the issue. Through one of their main spokespeople – a prominent character with both the Australian Skeptics and SAVN, they have started a campaign on the internet via blogs, their Facebook page and emails.

In a democracy we have a right to choice …

Both sides of an issue must be heard

Please ensure that informed choice and freedom of communication is supported.


So glad

Hi Bill.

Just shooting a quick email to say I’m so glad to hear you are having a representative of the AVN speaking this year- because of this my family and our business hope to support the festival and come next year.

I think the options need to be shared, the truth spoken and people then can make informed choices. i applaud you for enabling this !



Woodford Festival

Dear Organisers

Due to the AVN and their efforts I was alerted to the concerns with vaccinations.

Then due to personal experience our family chooses not to vaccinate our children through the medical paradigm.  Our neighbour’s child also passed away from SIDS the night their baby was vaccinated.

Our family uses a method which we believe protects our children from harm from disease and also from certain ingredients in the vaccinations themselves.

I have personally have read four books from very highly regarded sources.  The research of Dr Isaac Golden and Dr Mayer Eisenstein on the vaccination issue is extensive and impeccable.

It is crucial that the Australian Vaccination Network educates the public on the questions regarding the safety of vaccinations and the Woodford Festival is an appropriate medium to help spread this vital information as other areas in the public arena seek to protect their own interests and not of our children.

‘First do no harm’ is the primary principle for public health from which all decisions should be based upon.  The precautionary principle should always prevail.

Yours sincerely


Please continue to support information parents need to hear on vaccination      

Dear Bill and all,

Please please continue to let Meryl speak up on the hotly contested issue of vaccination at the Woodford Festival.

Her voice is the one small minority presenting the ugly side of vaccinations that people (*with* money connections) continue to try to shut down.

I am aware of the huge pressure you have come under to cancel her appearance – please stand up for the right to know.

I have chosen *not* to vaccinate my four children, after conducting careful research about the pros and cons.

Thankfully the efforts of people to educate on vaccination now means we at least have recommendations to use vaccinations that are free of mercury preservatives.  That is, recommendations in the main-stream health channels!

That is just one small reason why voices like Meryl’s need to continue to be heard.

Thank you,


Importance of the AVN being at the Woodford Folk Festival…

Hi, I am a parent and just want to share with you my thought’s on allowing the AVN to be  aired at the Woodford Folk Festival…I believe there is a real need in the community for information on the other side of the vaccination issue.

All parents need information on this issue to be able to make an informed choice for their family as we have done.

We have personally done alot of research into both sides of Vaccination Debate..and I believe all the community should be able to  have information available…in the community, as your Folk Festival would suggest .

Thank you for you time…

PNH and family

AVN presentation at Woodford

Dear Sir/Madam,

I have recently come to understand that you are being pressured or have been pressured to disallow the AVN from presenting information at your festival from the other side of the vaccination debate.

This I feel is a most unfortunate situation for you to be in as all information is valuable in regards to this highly debated subject.

I personally have brought up 3 children into adulthood without allowing vaccinations at all and as a consiquence we never once had to take our boys to a doctor. The first time one of them did go to a doctor was after a swimming accident when he was 16 years old. I can vouch for the safety and health of unvaccinated children from this first hand experience and I believe that free choice in the matter is paramount and that allowing an AVN presentation is valuable to assist parents and adults make an informed choice

Yours sincerely


For some extra information from the websight

— An unpublished study by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on a “measles susceptible” (malnourished) group of children showed that the group who hadn’t been vaccinated contracted measles at the normal contract rate of 2.4%. Of the group who had received the measles vaccine (MMR), 33.5% contracted measles.

— In 1975 Japan raised the minimum age for infant vaccinations to 2 years. As a result, SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or, crib death) and infant convulsions virtually disappeared. In the 80’s, Japan lowered the minimum age back down to 3 months and the rate of SIDS returned to previous levels.

— In an Australian study, a group of recruits were immunized for Rubella, and all produced the expected antibodies. When later exposed to the disease, 80% of the recruits contracted it.

— According to the U.S. National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (est.1986): To qualify for compensation, the adverse effects of vaccination must occur within four hours of receiving the vaccine. Despite this extremely severe limitation, as of February 28, 1998 compensatory payments have totalled $871,800,000.00. This figure is even more alarming when it is revealed that only one in four claimants were awarded compensation.

— Some researchers postulate that the use of live viral vaccines introduce foreign genetic material into the human system, which has contributed to the unprecedented escalation of auto-immune disorders (like multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, cancer, Crohn’s disease, asthma, etc.) in recent decades.

The above facts each highlight a different facet of the immunization question; effectiveness, adverse effects, and long-term consequences. The unspoken thread running through each of these is a pressing question: Why haven’t more people been informed of this evidence, and indeed, why is vaccination presented carte blanche as a positive, imperative requisite for our children’s health?


Folk Festival

Thank you for presenting Meryl Dorey on stage at the Woodford Festival. It is a long way from the NSW/Vic   border where I live, but if I can possibly make it I will get up there.

She was so helpful to me many years ago when I didn’t realize I had a choice about immunization and went ahead with the doctor’s direction that it was “time” for baby’s vaccination.  Bad decision!  Severe adverse reactions , convulsions, hospitalization  and meningitis leaving her with brain damage. The AVN and Meryl Dorey guided me with information about the conscientious objector’s form which allowed me to receive the government child payment which they had refused earlier because I discontinued with further vaccination.

She is definitely not anti-vaccination, but all for free choice.

Vaccination must never become compulsory in our wonderful free country.  It that happened, what would be next?

Thank you sincerely,


Support for Festival

Hi there.

I just wanted to show my support for Meryl Dorey who, being from the Australian Vaccination Network is scheduled to present at the Festival. Meryl will not be there to make decisions for people and tell them what they should and shouldn’t do regarding vaccination. She is going to inform people of a different point of view and let her audience make informed decisions for themselves.

Your website says:

“The festival is a place you can escape from ‘reality’ and immerse yourself in cultures from near and far. It is a place where artists inspire, community spirit engulfs and life memories are made. We hope you will join us.”

The Festival seems to be a very cultural and open place and to be where people can express their own opinions and their own uniqueness in their creative expressions.

I ask that you include Meryl in the Festival as she has been a major source of help and encouragement to thousands of people, including our family, in shedding light upon a very contraversial issue.

We chose not to vaccinate after our second son would stop breathing numerous times throughout the day for no apparent reason. Through further investigation, we discovered that if we vaccinated him he would very possibly have died while he was asleep as he had very weak bronchial tubes and one of the vaccines can slow the airways.

We did not take this opposing view of not vaccinating lightly. I have spent 7 years reading thousands of pages of material expressing both points of view. Whilst I see the reasoning behind vaccination, we chose not to for the benefit of our own family. Our 6 children are all very healthy even without vaccinations.

The Australian Vaccination Network has been a great encouragement with making more information available and for answering the many questions that our family has had over the years. They are invaluable to Australians everywhere and it would be a tragedy to see them silenced.

As Australian’s we pride ourselves in being a ‘free’ country where we are able to express ourselves under ‘freedom of speech’. When we stop letting people share their opinions, we begin to take this freedom away and we are only a few steps away from a dictatorship. We live in a very beautiful country with wonderful people of many different and diverse cultures. We are all unique and we should be able to listen to others as intellectual people and filter the information received to make informed decisions.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and I hope that you will still allow Meryl to speak. She deserves to be listened to.


Woodford Folk Festival –  Autism Emergency Seminar

To The Woodford Folk Festival

I’m writing in regards to the Autism Emergency seminar that Meryl Dorey is presenting at the Woodford Folk Festival.  It is my understanding that this seminar is in jeopardy of being pulled from the Festival for no apparent reason.

I would like to appeal your decision to pull this seminar based on the following:

The Woodford Folk Festival has grown by leaps and bounds since I lived in Brisbane.  The Festival is a mixture of old traditions, spirituality and open-mindedness.  When I lived there, I know many people who opposed going to the Festival because it was “weird”.  It fell out of the “norm” for most of the people I knew at the time.

Your Sponsors, in my opinion should understand the open-mindedness of this Festival.  They sponsor to market their product or service because of the number of people who attend.   They hope that we, the public will be interested in purchasing from them.  Thus, they should be respectful of us, our differences, our traditions, our spirituality and our open-mindedness.  That is the nature of the Festival.

We live in a country which is suppose to offer free speech and free religion. This means an individual has the choice to make their own decisions. They can listen and participate in an event or not. Once we begin to censor information, individuals no longer have a choice. If you pull this seminar, what message are you sending to us, the people?

Today, with so many avenues of information, it is becoming difficult to get to the “truth” on many subjects.  Vaccinations is one of the controversial subjects where information is lacking.

The Government is not providing adequate information regarding the facts and the risks.  They are protecting the Pharmaceutical Companies through Government Laws, Commercial Laws and Labeling Laws.

In addition, in my opinion, the Pharmaceutical Company’s top priority are to their share holders; not the protection of children.  They have one goal which is to make money.

As a parent of (3) children, I have a duty to ensure I’m making good choices. My children have to live with the choices I make which could change the course of their lives forever.

When my oldest child was born, she had the Vitamin K injection. I thought it’s a “Vitamin” until I read the Manufactures Insert. I was wrong.  There was more in the vial than Vitamin K (e.g. formaldehyde). Also, the insert said, 1 in 10,000 babies could die of hemorrhaging.

After the injection, 1 in 500 could get leukemia. Why is this product on the market?  I do not know.

No one told me risks. Had I known, I would NOT have allowed the Vitamin K shot. My child has speech difficulties and auditory processing issues.

No, I cannot prove the Vitamin K injection created this.

But I cannot prove the Vitamin K injection helped either.

This was my turning point regarding Vaccinations.

I have read a plethora of information regarding them in addition to the history of the diseases.   I have read medical journals, chemistry books, etc. to educate myself about the human body.  I have read herbal books and other alternative health books, etc.

I have concluded there is not enough information (e.g. risks) nor research done regarding Vaccinations.  Firstly, Vaccinations have not undergone the double-blinded placebo controlled trials.  Second, Vaccinations have not been tested on the reproductive system.  I have more reasons which I will not go into here.

Thus, I have chosen not to Vaccination my children.

Lastly, we have seen in the past person’s who have stood for their beliefs before the majority.  They were ostracized, condemned to death, vindicated, crucified, etc.  Today, we should be able to discuss with respect and without hostility or threats controversial subjects anywhere.

I hope you find this letter informative as well as positive in nature.


AVN to speak at festival

Hello Bill and Ingrid

I am writing this because Meryl from AVN has sent out an email saying that there are concerns about her speaking about vaccinations at the festival.

I very much support her being able to talk about these issues.  I have selectively vaccinated my children but I chose to not vaccinate them with every vaccination available.

I once believed that vaccinations were always beneficial until I met a family with 2 children who were harmed by vaccines and whose GP advised against further vaccinations.  Places like AVN allowed me to read about the other side of the argument.  I am often mystified by the vitriol hurled at people who dare whisper the question ‘are vaccines always safe all of the time’. I would never dream of telling another person what medical procedures they should have or not have.

I appreciate people like Meryl having the courage to raise her concerns about vaccinations.  My dream is that researchers will get serious about identifying why some people are so harmed by vaccinations and others experience little or no side effects so that truly safe ways of preventing disease are developed.  Vaccinations may or may not be part of that but the issue is that if there is no me to give voice to the problems how can we ever find a solution.

I hope that Meryl is able to speak at the festival.

Kind regards


Allowing Free speech at the Festival 

Dear Woodford Festival Promotors,

Each year I have relatives who attend your festival, although I have never attended myself.

I am sure there is a diverse range of exhibitions and stalls allowing people to show their wares, dance as they may see fit and speak of any subject they should desire.

However, vaccination appears to be another matter altogether.

I have been researching vaccinations for over 14 years and I am now completely opposed to them.  My biggest worry in life is that my grandchildren will be damaged or killed by vaccination.

In fact the more you study this subject the more alarming it all becomes.   Vaccines now cause great anxiety and arguments in families and they have destroyed the joy of childbirth by the dangerous and unecessary vaccines given to newborns.  There are many tragic stories for those who want to do their own research.

Those who speak out against vaccines are persecuted by those who have a financial interest in their continuation, or those who ignore the science that they are dangerous and cause many deaths, health problems and life long suffering.  We all now know a child with cancer, asthma, autism or diabetes, something that did not happen until vaccination was commenced in the 1950’s.

Even parents who have seen the dramatic plunge into Autism after vaccinations are ignored.

PLEASE for the sake of free speech and the health of our little children allow any person who approaches you to speak freely on vaccinations, so that both sides of this story can be considered by those wanting to know more about this vital subject.



Grafton NSW.

Woodford Festival and Freedom Of Speech

Hi Ingrid,

I’ve watched this single minded attack by the Skeptic’s Association on the AVN for some time now, and for the life of me cannot understand why an organisation simply presenting an alternate point of view in a supposed ‘free’ country, takes so much heat?  So much so that an academic was moved to write an entire study paper on the ferocity of the attack from both individuals and the media.

Are vested interests under threat?

I have met the founder of the AVN several times (Meryl Dorey) and know she is a person with a good heart, good intentions, an avid researcher and simply wishing to present an alternate point of view to that of the medical juggernaut, so that parents can make an informed decision.  We need to have rigorous debate about this issue, not one-sided pharma-funded marketing hype that lines shareholder’s pockets.

As a parent myself I simply wanted to know benefits and risks of vaccination.  When my wife was pregnant we did months of reading and research.  I am not against immunisation at all, for to be so would be to argue that once we ‘catch’ something we don’t build up immunity.  However as I did my research, the thought of sticking needles into my sons (now 40 combinations on the schedule by the age of 4!) simply didn’t feel ok to invade their delicate immune systems in such a way.  I only had smallpox, diphtheria and polio when I was a kid (with the polio on a sugar cube!), so why our children now have to have 40 different vaccinations is a mystery.

Consequently we chose to use homeoprophylaxis (homeopathic immunisation) for our boys, and even though the Skeptic’s Association says homeopathy is bunkum, I have seen it work first hand on my children with extraordinary results.

As an example, when a bout of whooping cough hit one of the kids in our eldest son’s primary school, we called our homeopath and asked for a homeopathic ‘booster’ for the whole family. We picked it up and inside the envelope was a note that in some sensitive people, after 24hrs of taking the booster, whooping cough-like symptoms sometimes occur for a couple of hours. Frankly we didn’t take much notice of the note!

Well, the next day almost 24hrs to the dot, our 2yo developed a strange cough.  We called the homeopathic clinic who advised us this was normal and a sign the remedy was working. Sure enough the symptoms disappeared after a few hours.  So if there’s ‘nothing’ in homeopathy and it’s only ever a placebo, how can a 2yo firstly understand what a placebo is, and secondly develop the symptoms as predicted and only for a few hours, then self-clear?  A placebo effect doesn’t make any sense in this scenario, however a predictive response from the homeopath that actually happened, does! And our 2 sons are healthy beyond belief with no allergies, asthma, eczema, ADD, ADHD etc etc.

Whether you agree or disagree with either side of the vaccination debate isn’t what is at stake here.  It’s more to do with choice and allowing people to be informed so they are better able to make their own choice.

If there’s anything you can do to ensure freedom of speech at Woodford and stop this mindless attack on an organisation that is simply filling a gap for parents, who want more objective information other than that put out by pharmaceutical companies, then please do!

Many thanks,


AVN Speaking at woodford

To Whom It May Concern,

I have been an attendee at Woodford over the many years that it has been running – first attending with my parents as a child when it was held at the Maleny Showgrounds.

Woodford has always been known not only for its fabulous music but also as a venue where guest speakers talk on a variety of issues and topics. Having attended many of these in the past I am always impressed that the topics are interesting and thought provoking and aim to expand the knowledge of the people attending. Often presently a view point that is rarely heard.

I was delighted to hear that AVN was speaking at Woodford and I am very disappointed to hear that there is a possibility of AVN’s attendance being cancelled due to objections from others on the content.

Why would the Woodford committee considering cancelling?

There will always be people who disagree and surely many of your other presenters will probably have people who disagree with the content that they are presenting also – but free speech and the sharing of information for both sides of any debate is critical and Woodford has always provided an avenue for this.

AVN has always been not about anti vaccination but about ensuring that people are informed. AVN is one of the few if only places that is able to provide well researched information on the disadvantages associated with vaccination. The AVN presentation will be intelligent, thought provoking and well researched.

Allow AVN to speak.

Your Sincerely,


Meryl Dorey at Woodford Folk Festival…support!

Hi Bill

I just read this blog by Peter Bowditch, which included your interview with Rick Morton and I just wanted to drop you a line to say how impressed I was to read your responses.

I have listened to both sides of the vaccination story and now assess each individual vaccine on the schedule on an individual basis and am relieved and grateful to have found the wealth of information the AVN gives out, as our mass media deliberately portrays only the other side of this issue.  I honestly don’t mind what people decide to do for themselves or their families but I strongly believe that Meryl Dorey and the AVN need to have a stronger voice in the community so people can at least make an informed decision about this issue.  Thank you for sticking to your guns and giving that opportunity to the people attending your festival.  If was in QLD, I would be there with bells on.

Kind regards


Support for Woodford and sponsors


We just wanted to let you know that we completely support the Woodford festival and its sponsors for allowing the issue of vaccination to be aired, and having Meryl Dorey there to provide people with such important information. As parents, we choose not to vaccinate our children, having researched in depth after our firstborn reacted negatively to her initial shots. We feel huge gratitude towards Meryl Dorey for her tireless efforts to make the other side of vaccination heard. It’s amazing that people have such a violent reaction to someone speaking out against vaccination- but with so much propaganda to actually promote it, we feel it is absolutely necessary. Freedom of choice means having access to all information!

Thank you,


Don’t censor the debate!


In relation to the attempted censorship of the AVN seminars at the folk festival this year I would like to voice my concern.

I commenced researching the topic of vaccination before my child was born last year.   My research lead me to the AVN which enabled me to access a whole world of literature and DVD’s by authors with various backgrounds.   People with personal experiences, to medical doctors with their own research to researchers dedicated to investigating everything about the history and current research findings about vaccines and insight regarding vaccinations, the government, drug companies, the medical industry and everything related to this topic.

I purchased a lot of media about all things you would never have known about vaccines and also the homeopathic approach to preventing infectious disease of which I would never had been able to access any of this material without finding the AVN.

After doing a lot of research I decided not to have my child injected with or any other means of putting medical vaccines into her body, she is a bubble of joy going from strength to strength at an accelerating rate.

I strongly feel that being a democratic developed country that all people have the right to access everything the AVN has to offer being all the literature from around the world and including presentations at public events like your festival.   There is a whole world of knowledge and scientific research about the things people should be able to know about vaccines.

I would like put forward to your organisation my recommendation that the censorship of AVN at this years festival and all future festivals should not be allowed.

I have travelled to attend the festival on previous occasions and I would recommend to my friends and family that the festival is worth attending to enable access to seminars and literature offered by the AVN, among all the other wonderful things on offer at the festival.

Thanks for considering my concern and opinion.



Vaccination debate

To the organizers of the Woodford Folk Festival,

I have attended the Woodford Folk Festival each year for the last ten years and it has come to my attention that you may be under some pressure to not let Meryl Dorey speak.

I would like to encourage you to stand firm and allow freedom of speak on such important topics and information.

Kind regards

Woodford folk festival: anti vaccination speech


I have always loved folk music. It sings about honesty, about goodness, about emotions and about people.

It sings about being good to people by the people for the people.

Meryl has constantly stood alone against the might of the corporatized pharmaceutical organisations and government machinery to have her voice heard because she believes that vaccination has hurt her child before and all she is asking now is for fairness for others to hear her story and decide for themselves. I think we should give the people a chance to decide for themselves and not let fear rule the day.

After all she is doing to save children, the heart and soul of the movement.

Contrary to what you may have heard, there is growing amount of literature and studies showing that vaccination is not as safe as one thought. Do you know vaccines have never been monitored/tested clinically on a mass scale before their release to the public?

The foundation of science rests on verifiable repeatable events. Vaccination has never been verified in this manner. The growing oppositions does not come only from concerned mothers or fathers, but from doctors, scientists, medical professionals and applied scientists.

Please give the people a voice,  give Meryl Dorey    a chance to speak.

“Like Judas of old

You lie and deceive

You’ve thrown the worst fear

That can ever be hurled

Fear to bring children

Into the world

For threatenin’ my baby

Unborn and unnamed

You ain’t worth the blood

That runs in your veins ”

Bob Dylan

Thank you.

Yours truly,




Vaccines contain toxic substances that are tolerated by most, but not all children. Why else would the Australian Immunisation Handbook in the section dealing with “Valid Consent” talk about “the potential risks and benefits” and “medical conditions that contraindicate vaccination”? Why does the USA have a compensation fund that all vaccine manufacturers are required to contribute to in order to fund claims from the parents of medically recognised vaccine damaged children? Many years ago, all of our children had their vaccinations and fortunately there were no adverse reactions. I am a grandparent, but if I had my time over again, I would selectively vaccinate my children on the basis of their risk of contracting a specific illness. However, I would be thinking, please don’t let it be my child that has a bad reaction. I am aware my ability to choose individual vaccines is now quite limited as many vaccines are combined and unavailable separately.

I have read literature by Dr Tinus Smits M.D (deceased) in the Netherlands who treated, over something like 25 years, many vaccine damaged children. He used the term vaccinosis. Dr Smits was quite successful in many cases using homoeopathic remedies made from the vaccines. He found that sometimes a child would react to stabilisers, fillers or preservatives in the vaccines and not the infective agent. I am also conversant with published literature by Dr Isaac Golden who did his PhD at Swinburne University on longitudinal data collected for more than 10 years from homoeoprophylaxis (alternative to vaccination) patients.

I am very concerned that attempts to prevent the AVN from speaking at your Festival represent a diminution of the democratic right of people to hold an opposing view. Also, the right of all parents to be aware of an opposing view, in order for them to make informed and responsible choices on behalf of their children.

Similar attempts were made in Western Australia when the AVN attempted to hire a venue to address the public following a case of severe brain damage said to have been incurred after a child received a flu shot. Many other children in WA and in the other Australian States had adverse reactions from flu shots. After losing one venue the AVN was successful in hiring the Alexander Library lecture theatre.

I sincerely hope the Woodford Festival committee, and its sponsors, support the right of responsible freedom of expression and recognise that all Australian parents need to make responsible choices based on a level playing field free from any form of intimidation


Meryl Dorey AVN

Hi Bill

Just a quick note to thank you for allowing Meryl to give the freedom of choice point of view at your Festival.

I personally did not vaccinate my children against whooping cough (many years ago, as the oldest is now 34).  Back then it was freely reported that there could be a connection between whooping cough vaccination and epilepsy.  As my niece, who was three then, had been severely epileptic since seven months of age, my doctor advised me against it.  Even back then, there was whooping cough in my children’s pre-schools a few times, but my kids didn’t get it.

I saw Lisa on Today a week or so ago, talking about this issue with Karl and Georgie (their surnames escape me).  Lisa said all three of her children, fully vaccinated, got whooping cough.  Also, she said she had a friend who has a child with autism, who believes there is a possibility of a connection to vaccination.  Karl said “So, are you saying, if you had a baby now, you wouldn’t vaccinate?”  Lisa said, “No, I would, but I just believe people should be informed.”  I agree with her.  People should be allowed to  be informed

Best of luck with the coming Festival.  I’m sure you don’t need it, except perhaps for the weather.

Kind regards


AVN Presentation at Woodford festival

Dear Woodford festival organiser,

I have been made aware by Meryl Dorey from the AVN that there has been a number of actions by the “Stop the AVN” organisation who are trying to silence open discussion in regards to vaccination to the Woodford festival.

I would like to encourage you to openly welcome Meryl to speak at the festival as the AVN has been instrumental in promoting an open debate in regards to vaccination and providing accessible unbiased information to Australian parents and health practitioners.

As a tertiary educated parent of three children (who have never been vaccinated), I undertook substantial research in regards to whether or not to vaccinate my children and unfortunately the medical profession only provides biased information which has been “sold” to them by the very pharmaceutical companies manufacturing the vaccines.  In addition the medical profession quickly deserts parents whose children have had an adverse reaction from vaccination as I have heard from numerous parents.

My children have to date experienced superior health in comparison to the majority of their peers and I am confident that this has in part been due to not having their immune systems compromised by the toxins included in vaccinations.  They have not had recurrent ear and other viral infections like the majority of their friends not any other “childhood” illness.

As a democracy I believe open debate in regards to important issues, including health choices, should be encouraged and I would urge you to ensure that Meryl has an opportunity to present important information in regards to the vaccination debate at your festival

Yours sincerely


Freedom of Speech at Woodford

Hi there Woodford Folkers,

I am writing to express my gratitude towards you and the festival for being a consistent forum for alternative and underground music, art forms, and points of view.  I have been to the festival a number of times (travelling all the way from W.A. with my partner and kids) and have even applied to perform there in the past.  In addition to the sounds of Dya Singh, the sights of Mr. Om, and the smells of the Chai Tent, I have enjoyed talks on topics of importance (such as Graeme Sait on soil health and human health, and David Holmgren on peak oil).

I have heard through the grapevine that some vocal anti-democratic groups are pressuring you to end your tradition of providing insightful and alternative lectures.  I wanted to let you know that I am among the tens of thousands of Woodford fans that turn up each year precisely to cartwheel and samba over such stifling conformity, and fully support your role as a forum for the alternative.

Without healthy debate, challenging art forms, and experimental sounds life would become a very un-Woodford-like beige.

Thanks again,


Thank you for standing strong & allowing a dissenting voice to be heard

Dear Bill,

I’d like to personally thank you for standing strong on allowing a dissenting voice to be heard – Meryl Dorey’s at the AVN.

Our family have recently had a negative experience with the medical profession at in a NSW Hospital ER and Meryl’s advice on the matter has been fair & pro choice for “consumers”. I can assure you, that the Director of the hospital we met with is NOT pro-choice and actively supports his doctors “giving patients enough information to make the right decision .. the decision we want them to make.” These Doctors do not give people enough information to make an informed decision (for themselves and their family), and in some case (ours in particular) it is malpractice.

Thank you, once again, for standing strong & allowing a dissenting voice to be heard.



The Blue Mountains NSW

Vaccination Choice

It has been brought to my attention that threat are being made against a proposed talk on pro-choice in vaccinations at this year’s Woodford Folk Festival. As a regular attendee for many many years I have enjoyed many so-called controversial conversations on a myriad of topics, and do not see this as any different. It is the presentation of the ‘other’ side that is often missing in many mainstream conversations, which is so badly needed to help those seeking information find the links to make an informed decision.

As a mum of three, and a scientists, I spent many hours researching this topic and made the decision to not vaccinate. All three children have been healthy and happy, and in fact have had brushes with some diseases that are vaccinated against – curiously it was the vaccinated kids that contracted the disease (and presumably spread them), which left me extremely puzzled given the pro-vaccination claims. I am happy with my choices, and knew many who are in the process of doing their own research. Please don’t succumb to the threats and allow other ideas to be suppressed.

Yours sincerely


re the AVN”s Meryl Dorey speaking at the festival

Dear Bill,

I am a Maleny local and have attended the Maleny Folk Festival since 1989/90 many, many times. You would know my face if you saw me.

Please Bill don’t bow to these damn skeptics and their draconian and threatening ways. Please allow Meryl to speak. If the other side of the vaccination debate is not allowed to be heard many more people will blindly think that there are no problems with vaccination until it affects their family. WE simply cannot stifle debate – while the drug companies are not telling the whole truth and to anyone (esp anyone who may actually have evidence) who may suggest other than their touted lines are open to castigation and humiliation in the public arena. Or as they are doing with Homeopathy – (my profession) carrying out a concerted plan to discredit and outlaw this valid type of treatment regardless of the scientific evidence that shows it works. These skeptic associations have links and funding that have already been in some cases traced back to drug company funding – and they hide behind the banner of so called legitimate science – however true science does not have a closed mind and this is not what is happening.

These same people have been scouring our websites to find anything that they can report homeopaths to the TGA – even if it is erroneously taken out of context to suit their needs and then leave the practitioner to have to fight their way out of the allegations that are made ‘anonymously’ by these cowardly people. They say they are out there to ‘save people’ however their closed mind is far more dangerous than any suggestion by the AVN that we need to look at the evidence that is mounting about vaccination.

Please, Please don’t bow to their pressure. Allow freedom of information

Many thanks for your time.



AVN presentation

Hi There

I really don’t have much time to write to you, my computer’s collapsed and I’m at my Mum’s using hers, my three children are patiently waiting for their lunch as I type!

But, this issue is so important to me that I wanted to write to you and let you know that I fully support the work of Meryl Dorey and the AVN in distributing information on vaccination, on choices for vaccination and our legal rights and responsibilities as individuals and parents, not only that but Meryl and the AVN are staunch defenders and protectors of our health rights here in Australia. Their information and voice must be heard!

In some ways it’s not even a matter of “to vaccinate or not” ; it’s a matter of freedom for people to become as diversely informed as possible to make the choice they believe is best for the wellbeing of themselves and their families.

My husband and I chose about 10 years ago that we would not have any of our children vaccinated. My oldest child is now 9, I have another 6 and another 4. None of them have ever presented with ANY of the diseases vaccinations are supposed to protect against even thought they’ve been surrounded by cousins, childhood friends and children in playgroup and kinder that have still managed to contract whooping cough, chicken pox and measles even though they’ve been fully vaccinated!

Whatever your personal choice, it’s important to have as much information as you can.

I’ve said many times to my vaccinating and non vaccinating friends who are parents, we all want what’s best for our children, none of us want to harm them, I don’t want to harm my children and I think not vaccinating is best.

Some of my dearest friends are staunch vaccinators from a medical background, they think vaccinating is best. How could any of us make an informed choice without diverse information from all sides of the debate.

And to be a little facetious, why do proponents of vaccination try so hard to stop Meryl and the AVN, after all of them and their children and families are ‘protected’ because they’ve been vaccinated, and all us ‘uneducated unvaccinators’ will all die out through catching all the diseases we haven’t been vaccinated for and then the world will be safe!

Please do let Meryl hold her presentation, there’s such an imbalance of information in this debate, there are so many vested interests and so many quick and easy ways the government could stop this debate immediately if vaccines were safe and effective, they merely need to start disclosing the vaccine status of everyone who gets diseases, and gather the statistics of a percentage of unvaccinated people who get diseases. If the AVN’s so wrong they need not rely on boycotts, vicious emails and campaigns, they could just prove it!

Regards from a very content Conscientious Objector


Support for Meryl Dorey

The Vaccination issue:

I write to thank you for inviting Meryl Dorey to speak at your festival and confirm it is essential the public learn the “other side”  of the vaccination issue  ..

Meryl is an excellent speaker .. her aim is to enable parents to make an “informed choice” regarding vaccination .. to encourage them to “research” the pros and cons of vaccinations instead of blindly adhering to the limited information their GP gives them

I have worked in the medical profession all of my adult life and have met very many physicians who do not vaccinate their own children but because of peer pressure continue to vaccinate the children of “others” accepting payment along the way for so doing .. it is a brave physician whose ethics prevent them from following this path but I assure you there are many in this country who are aware of the adverse side effects  of vaccinations and whose integrity spells out every aspect of vaccination to unwary and uninformed parents to give them every opportunity to make  an “informed choice”

Vaccinations are given on the first day of birth before the immune system is developed .. I refer to the Hep B vaccination now mandated for every child instead of those just at risk from an infected mother and for a child born with a compromised immune system this puts them on the  downward slope .. followed by regular vaccinations which further weaken an already struggling immune system until at approx 14 months the child  regresses completely, loses speach, awareness, cognition, no longer meets  their early childhood milestones and is subsequently diagnosed as being on  the Autism spectrum .. included in this spectrum are those children who  are in severe pain, resulting in reactions of uncontrollable behaviour because they are unable to speak and say what hurts .. their poor parents at wit’s  end do not know how to help them and at this stage wish they had been better informed !

I am surrounded by hundreds of children in whom this scenario has developed and it is a very very sad indictment on our Govt an our medical profession that they will not “listen” to parents and experts like Meryl Dorey who are all to familiar with the tragedy that has developed in the current generation of children and is set to increase with every passing year UNTIL common sense prevails and vaccinations are scaled back or given when the child is older and has developed a viable immune system better able to counteract the horrendous contents of vaccines .. especially those that are combined to cover multiple perceived illnesses

Meryl has researched for years and is perhaps the most informed person in this country .. she very much needs to be heard because it is only when a child experiences an adverse reaction to vaccines that the parents become aware of the inherent dangers and by then it is TOO LATE

One of my own grandchildren succumbed in this way .. tragic to witness  and appalling in the effect it had on parents .. subsequent grandchildren have not been vaccinated and are very healthy neurotypical children with strong immune systems because “informed choices” were made

If all parents in this country were aware and could make an “informed choice” I am positive the levels of autism and sickness in the current generation of children would vastly diminish .. yes there are other external factors why so many children now have health problems but there is more awareness of environmental toxins and no awareness of the dangers vaccinations  can present





















Neena Love

Supporters of health freedom respond to censorship

I am due to present one seminar and participating in a forum on toxicity at the Woodford Folk Festival in a bit over 2 weeks’ time. (Thursday, December 29th from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM – Autism Emergency – 1 child in 38; Friday, December 30th from 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM – Forum on Toxicity – both at the Blue Lotus)

Of course, Stop the AVN (SAVN) and their minions are once again trying to censor this side of the issue. Through one of their main spokespeople – a prominent character with both the Australian Skeptics and SAVN, they have started a campaign on the internet via blogs, their Facebook page and emails to the Woodford management and their sponsors. They claim that allowing information on the downside of vaccinations to be aired at this venue is dangerous and the Festival should cancel my appearances. They are also threatening to boycott the sponsors.

These are the same people who claim that allowing parents and other interested parties to access information on the risks and ineffectiveness of vaccination is going to harm all of society including those who are fully vaccinated! They feel that you are not intelligent enough, or discerning enough, to be trusted to make your own decision by being made aware of all available information. In fact, they think that it is their right to determine what you can and cannot know because as your betters and as representatives of the scientocracy that is currently governing Australia, they have decided that you have to offer up your children to vaccination for the greater good without question and without choice.

Two articles on this issue (well, an article at the bottom of the page and an update on top) have appeared on the mamamia blog which is notoriously anti-choice. The articles are rabid – the comments to these articles are toxic. The most obvious thing is that none of these people has any scientific reason for objecting to our participation at Woodford – they simply disagree with our viewpoint. As a result, they feel that nobody should be allowed to hear our side of this debate and are trying to force their censorship on the Festival. In fact, they say there IS no debate – there is only one side to the vaccination issue and only scientists and doctors should be allowed to discuss it in public and the rest of us should just shut up and do what we’ve been told!

We urgently need anyone who believes in freedom of speech and communication (no matter what your opinion is about the benefits and risks of vaccination) to send letters to the organisers and the sponsors to let them know that there is a real need in the community for information on the other side of the vaccination issue. Please take 5 minutes to write a quick letter and send it to the following addresses (please use the BCC field in your email if at all possible). As you can see from the letters below, you don’t have to write a lot – one or two sentences is fine. It is very important that you DO write however. You need to defend freedom of choice in Australia – it will take all of us working together to maintain our health freedom.

Here are some suggested points to make:

1- Why you chose not to vaccinate or to vaccinate selectively.
2- Your personal or family experience with vaccination (or non-vaccination)
3- How much research you have done on this issue.
4- How the AVN has helped you.
5- Why you support Woodford and their sponsors for allowing this issue to be aired.

Of course, feel free to include any information you’d like! I know how precious time is so just make this as long or as short as you are able – as long as you write it and write it soon!

At the bottom of this blog post are the letters which have been sent since last night. Feel free to ‘borrow’ from them for your own letters – I’m sure the author’s won’t mind!

Here are the email addresses for the Woodford Festival as well as my email to bcc your letter to:

And here are the sponsors – many of these are web comment fields so just copy and paste your emails into the forms.

Queensland Government
Brisbane Marketing
Moreton Bay Regional Council
Midell Water
Clarke Kann Lawyers
US Consulates
Skill Centred
ABC Coast FM

Thanks so much for your help with this very important issue. It is up to us to ensure that informed choice and freedom of communication are supported.

Yours in health,
Meryl Dorey

Censorship is not an Australian Custom

Vaccination is a choice. People have the right to choose. People have the right to stay informed. Censorship on this issue is un-Australian.

My Brother and my husband both had reactions in their youth and were advised by the GP not to continue with the program. This was back in the 70’s. My children having reactions on both sides had much higher risks of reactions than other kids.

Without the AVN, I would not have been able to make an informed decision. I asked the Dr’s about reactions and side affects from vaccinations and on what substances were in the injections and they were unable to answer any of my questions properly. Most seemed uninformed.

Keep the line of information open.

Thank you,


Woodford Folk Festival – Meryl Dorey AVN presentation

I am writing with regard to the Woodford Folk Festival soon to be held, where in Meryl Dorey of the AVN is scheduled to speak on the issues around vaccination.

It is my understanding that certain groups of people are trying to stop Meryl from presenting at this forum and I would like to urge you to please allow her to continue with her presentation. I have personally attended one of her presentations and found it to be extremely informative.

As a parent researching this issue I have visited multiple doctors and health nurses and could not get any satisfactory or informative answers to my questions. I got the same standard response such as ‘the Wakefield study was a fraud’ ‘Autism is merely a coincidence based on the age it presents’ and my questions were usually met with hostility. However Meryl’s presentation was not based on her own opinion, all her material was on stats, facts and information that I found to be extremely educational and assisted me in my own research into this issue and it was an opportunity to discuss the issues the doctors just cannot answer.

Parents are asking these questions and doctors don’t or rather can’t answer them. Putting your head in the sand won’t make these questions go away – These issues need to be brought out in the open so that we all can learn and do what’s best for our children.



AVN Seminars 


I just wanted to email you to see if it is true that you are considering cancelling the seminars set for Meryl Dorey of the AVN.  I implore you not to cancel these seminars if for no other reason that people have the right to both sides of the vaccination story.  For too long parents have been going along with what the Government and their doctors tell them they must do without any knowledge of the consequences.  We have the right to this important information and Meryl is the one who is willing to stick her neck out and help us parents to be informed.

I work with people and animals in my natural healing business and see probably more than most the damage caused by vaccinations.

Please support the AVN to share this important information.  Don’t cancel the seminars.

Kindest regards


Kudos to the Festival


I am just emailing to offer my support to Bill following the transcript that has been put up on the Mama Mia website (that I will now be boycotting).

Vaccination is an important issue to many people and deserves to be discussed publicly.

I commend the festival for supporting freedom of communication and I hope that the bullying tactics that often surround the vaccination issue will not deter you in continuing to support free speech on this issue.


Thank you

Dear Bill, Ingrid,

I want to thank you for putting Meryl Dorey from the Australian Vaccination Network (AVN) on the program this year. I realise that this is a very emotive and contentious area and that there will be many people who do not want her to speak.

It is vital that the facts about vaccination are available for everyone to make an informed choice. The AVN provides much needed information on latest research and findings about the efficacy and the risks associated with vaccines. This information is hardly ever covered by the mainstream media or the medical profession.

I have read widely on the subject of vaccinations and have found the AVN an invaluable source of information.

I am volunteering for my 9th year and Meryl is the person I am most excited about seeing this year.

Again, thank you so much for making the bold decision to allow this very courageous and determined woman to speak.




Dear Woodford Folk,

As an avid patron of your great festival I am writing to you to express my concern about the pressure you may be feeling to cancel the appearance of Meryl Dorey of the Australian Vaccination Network. I understand that there has been a concerted campaign to have her silenced by small but vocal group of people who believe open debate about health issues is dangerous.

I would like you to know that the AVN is fantastic volunteer organization that has helped my family enormously as we have zigzagged our way through parenting with healthy and no so healthy children. Their support and advocacy for vaccine injured children is extraordinary.

I would be very disappointed if the free, open spirit of the festival I love so much was tarnished by the organizers bowing to pressure to exclude The AVN from making a presentation.

I will definitely be there to hear Meryl speak.

Thank you,



To the organisers of woodfordia,

I would just like to voice my support for the Vaccination information session you have organised as part of Woodfordia Folk Festival this year.  Open information and education is such an important part of a healthy society, and I urge you not to be persuaded by people trying to silence Meryl and the AVN.

Each and every person should have the right to decide how to raise their own children, and open access to information is vital in allowing this to occur in the best interest of the children.  I have chosen not to vaccinate my children to date, and I have 6 very healthy kids.

However, I remain open to reviewing all information, both for and against vaccines, and I would change my position on vaccines if the evidence were to show they are either adequately safe, or adequately effective

Kind regards,


Keeping everything in balance

Meryl Dorey at your festival. It is good that you have given her theopportunity to lend some balance to this subject which has been highjacked by people with an agenda.



Meryl Dorey at Woodford


I am writing in relation to the contention that appears to be surrounding Woodford’s decision to include Meryl Dorey from the AVN in the festival program.

I would just like to say that I am so impressed that Woodford has included Meryl in the program and I sincerely hope that the actions and reactions of a few angry and misguided people won’t deter you from having her speak at the festival. I have seen the articles that have been published about this issue on the Mammamia website and I have tried making peaceful comments on the page to present the other side of the issue, however some people can be very aggressive and stubborn about this issue and they have mostly responded with a lot of unjustified anger and downright rudeness.

I am sure you have included Meryl due to your own appreciation for alternative health and natural therapies and the desire to spread awareness of alternative forms of health care. I believe it is so vital that people have access to this information, and Meryl is one of the only people with the courage to speak publicly about this issue and present the alternative side of the story. I myself have chosen not to vaccinate my own child and only came to this decision after weeks, bordering on months of research and careful deliberation. Instead I continue to work very closely with a leading (and extensively published) naturopath who has had excellent results in curing a number of conditions in people where modern medicine had written them off. He also strongly advises against vaccination and has had first hand experience witnessing the severe and life threatening reactions that children can have to them. I myself know of at least 3 families whose children have suffered scary reactions to routine immunisations.

Not only do I believe with all my heart in the benefits and power of natural medicine and the decision to avoid medical intervention such as vaccination where possible, but I have a wide circle of friends and associates who share these views. Many of these friends are musicians who have played at Woodford over the years. There is a strong culture of people who wish to follow this path, and the culture is growing rapidly. I believe Woodford is a crucial platform for supporting this culture and has been for some time.

It goes with out saying that my family and I wholeheartedly endorse Woodford’s decision to allow Meryl to enjoy her right to free speech and to offer her a platform in which to present a safe, effective and alternative model of health care for the children of today and tomorrow. I beg you not to give in to these fear-mongering people who are threatening to boycott the festival and the sponsors.

Thanks to people like Meryl, there is more positive change occuring in the field of health care than ever before. People should have the right to choose on this important issue and to consider the information this courageous woman has to present. Unlike the majority of ‘research’ on vaccination, hers isn’t funded by massive pharmaceutical corporations.

Well done Woodford, you have always been progressive and created a wonderful space for the non-conformist, creative, and radical free-thinking individuals of this world. As they say ‘any publicity is good publicity’ so enjoy creating a stir and I wish you every success for the festival and the Meryl Dorey presentation.



AVN Lectures

The Woodford Festival is one of fairness, family values and honesty – I feel that the issue of vaccination is one that many of your festival goers would be most interested in hearing about and would be impressed that you have actually stood up to Big Pharma in letting the talks by the AVN be aired.

As a health care practitioner I see so much injustice and harm done in the area of vaccination – we need proper investigation into this subject and I feel that the danger of immunisation is not being addressed properly.

I totally trust the ethics of the AVN and know that the smear campaign being waged towards it is very unreasonable and represents only a small number of radicals.  Most people I meet are only too happy to hear the other side (for a change!) and are getting so fed up with being fed the continual lies about ‘medical’ treatment.

The day when the pharmaceutical companies are no longer in charge of GP education and when GP’s are paid to report immunisation reactions, not just the fee to immunise, as is the case now, I will be very relieved and feel that honest science is back on track.

Please do not get swayed into preventing these talks by the AVN – please go and hear Meryl Dorey speak and you will be enlightened.

Thank you


Please don’t succumb to blackmail

Dear Woodford Folk Festival organisers

I am writing to you as I believe that there is a concerted effort by a small group of persons known as “Stop the AVN” who do not want to allow any debate or discussion to occur at Woodford on possible harm from vaccinations.

I believe that we still do live in a country with some democracy, even if this group does not . I hope that you do not allow this group to stop public debate on vaccinations.

While not an expert on vaccinations, I have done enough research to know that harm can and does occur. I also believe that with some particular vaccinations there is significant risk that does not balance the benefit.

I have followed the case of the 2 year child who died in Brisbane last year as a result of a swine flu vaccination and the Perth baby who is now brain damaged as a result of a flu vaccination. The parents of this child are now suing CSL

Public debate and realistic information on vaccinations is very necessary, particularly in view of the lack of any proper adverse effects monitoring in Australia. The adverse effects monitoring is done by the drug companies themselves, a case of the fox guarding the hen house.

I ask that you do not succumb to this group who want to stop debate. You might as well pack up now and not bother having a festival if important issues are not allowed to be discussed.

Yours with concern


Meryl Dorey speaking at the Woodford Folk Festival

Dear Woodford Folk Festival

It has come to my attention that there is some push to have the Woodford Folk Festival rescind its invitation to have Meryl Dorey of the Australian Vaccination Network speak at the festival.

I would like to say that both personally and in my professional standing I feel this would be a tragic mistake.

All people deserve to make a well educated choice on the issue of vaccination and that can only be done where people have access to both sides of an issue.

I have researched this issue to the best of my ability for some 15 years now and I am completely and utterly convinced of the importance of the public having access to the possible down side of vaccination, as it is a very real downside. Those who wish to protect the current vaccine paradigm will do whatever they can to stop this, including where ever possible preventing freedom of speech.  People are not stupid, contrary to what the drug companies would have us believe, and having been given enough information are perfectly capable of making their own decisions as to what is best for their families – whatever that will be.

We must not lose the AVN.  It has been an invaluable source of information for myself and hundreds of people I have throughout the last decade sent to them for help.  I have never had reason to regret sending anyone to them or their web site for information.  It is imperative that their message not be stopped and I plead with you to not allow pressure that is being brought to bear allow you to stop Ms Dorey from speaking.

I have always loved the Woodford Fold Festival and it’s very existence and its longevity are proof that there is room in this world for all types of people with all tastes and belief systems.  Let’s not allow that to change now.

Remember “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. ” – Edmund Burke

I am afraid you are now in that unenviable position.  I pray you make the right choice.

Warm regards,


Woodford Festival

To the organisers of the 2011 Woodford Festival,

I am deeply concerned to learn that there is a campaign afoot by members of the SAVN and Australian Skeptics to have Meryl Dorey of the AVN removed from the program at Woodford Festival this year.

My husband and I are both well educated on vaccination.

We spent many months intensely researching both sides of the issue / debate when our first child was born.

Our sources were doctors, medical journals, books written by highly respected doctors and research scientists and symposiums.

One of the most glaring and disturbing realisations of the entire process was the lack of facts provided to the public of which we have the right to know.

Vaccines are not 100% effective nor are they 100% safe (far more people have died from vaccines or left dreadfully debilitated than are reported) and parents – and individuals – have the right to be fully informed before they make the choice to vaccinate or not – or in many cases : vaccinate by a ‘safer’ schedule which allows for the immune system to recover before being assaulted with another round.

The AVN and Meryl Dorey play a very important role.

I have known Meryl Dorey for almost 20 years. In that time she has never pressured or cajoled us to not vaccinate.

She and the AVN have been an organization that has provided factual information to families to aid them in their decision and she continues to support them no matter what they decide. The AVN is pro-choice and pro-information – which is more than I can say for our Health Department, that only provides selective and limited information in glossed-over and vague language.

It is the AVN that researches and provides factual and statistic backed studies and reports.

It is essential that Meryl be allowed to present at the Woodford Festival – without interference. She has incredible integrity, inner strength and grace.

Please do all you can to ensure she remains on your program.

Thanking you,



I would like to acknowledge and pay respects to the Jagera people and Yerongpan clan  in Forestdale, on whose land I walk, work and live.  I would also like to pay respects to Elders past, present & future.

I support Meryl Dorey at Woodford!

Dear Bill and Ingrid,

I understand that you have been contacted by an organisation to cancel Meryl Dorey’s opportunities to speak at Woodford this year. I am not normally a vocal person on the issue of immunization because I believe that people need to make their own decisions, as I have done for my family as a result of extensive research. However, this view pre-supposes free speech which I believe is under threat in this instance. The organisation that has contacted you is trying to stop any debate or discussion in the area of immunization choice. Individual choice on this issue is not being promoted, despite the growing medical data that shows that immunizations can do harm to otherwise healthy children. Information provision to enable choices to be made is part of a healthy, free society. I urge you to keep Meryl on the bill in the spirit of your festival.

Kind regards


Please let the Meryl Dorey and the AVN participate in the festival! 

To whom it may concern,

I have just heard that certain people are trying to get you to not allow Meryl Dorey to speak on the down sides of vaccination.  This really upsets me, I am a mother of 8 children, 6 of whom were vaccinated and 2 who were not.  Out of the 6, 3 have been diagnosed with Autism and Developmental delays, 1 with ADHD, 1 with a severe language disorder and the last one has severe mood swings and food allergies.  They also suffer from gastrointestinal disorders, Eczema, Asthma, Psoriasis, Urinary tract infections, ear infections, food allergies, chemical sensitivities.  My two youngest and unvaccinated children have none of their siblings disorders.  There is no history of Autism spectrum disorders in my or my husband’s family history, and we had genetic testing done and there were no abnormalities found, the only difference between our children is their vaccination status.

If only someone could have told me before I vaccinated my first 6 children that there were risks of serious adverse reactions, then I might have been able to recognise the symptoms in my children sooner, I might have been able to spare some of my children the monumental challenges that they now face.  My doctor had only warned me of the possibility of a slight bump at the injection site and a temperature, he never told me that they can suffer serious allergic reactions, convulsions, encephalitis and even death!  I took my children in to get their shots blindly believing that they would be fine and my children paid the price for my ignorance.

That it is why it is so important that both the pros and the cons of vaccination be able to be discussed by the people who are taking all the risks.  It is our families that are taking the risks, should we not be even allowed to discuss a medical procedure that ultimately affects our families?

I have now spent the last 6 years researching studies, attending forums, talks, seminars, reading books on vaccination, looking up statistical data and I have found that the lack of information provided on the risks of vaccination to the public by medical professionals is at the very best negligent.  When you go in to see a surgeon, they tell you ALL the risks that come with having a particular surgery yet when it is vaccination they just tell you about the most minor, why is this?

Parents should be entitled to know all the information in order to make a truly informed decision, and that is what Meryl Dorey is trying to do, provide information that is not being given to parents.  What parents decide to do with that information is up to them as it so rightly should be, because in the end it is up to them to decide what is best for their family and how can you do this without all the facts?

The other part of all this that disturbs me is the attempt to curtail freedom of speech, is there a law against discussing vaccination in public, the last time I looked there wasn’t so how can these people be allowed to get away with their bullying and censorship?!?

Lastly I would like to encourage you to not give in to the bullying and threats of these deniers of free speech, and make the festival what it was always intended to be a place for the community to come together and share ideas unburdened by outside interests and agendas.

I would also like to give my full support to you and to your sponsors for being courageous enough to allow freedom of speech a place in your festival.

Kind regards


Woodford Folk Festival

Hi there,

I have been reading about the Woodford Folk Festival and also that you plan to have Meryl Dorey give a presentation from the AVN.   I just want to commend you and thank you for giving this side of the vaccination debate a hearing.

More than the “for or against” argument of this whole debate, what I find really ugly and unaustralian, are the vicious attempts by one side to silence the other.

I am so glad that the AVN has avenues to present information calmly and clearly  so that parents and families can learn more about both sides of vaccinations, instead of the singular one side that we constantly get fed by so called “experts”.

I have been very grateful in the past for huge events like the Conscious Living Expo here in Perth, that advocate freedom of choice and allow Meryl to present her information freely without bowing to the heavy handed censorship or gag attempts by the SAVN and other parties paid for by medical corporations.

I know that you and your organizers must be coming under fire at this time, as these groups pull out all stops to prevent or ruin Meryl’s speech at your event.   This really saddens me.  But i saw them do the same thing here in my home town, when she came for a visit, taking out huge adverts in the papers and trying to blacken her and the AVN in the eyes of the public.  These are really just bullying tactics.     I hope you can stand firm in your decisions to allow her to share the information she has, as I can honestly say it is VERY important information that really must be made available for parents so that they CAN make an informed choice.

I am not necessarily anti-vaccination, but I am PRO choice!  The reasons I am so passionate about us having the choice, is that many years ago, I blindly took my first two daughters for their vaccinations, because I was told by the medical profession this was the right thing to do.   I did not realize I had a choice.   My first daughter had severe reactions but I was told this was “normal”.  Fortunately for her, she had no lasting side effects, though many years later, behind my back, her doctor convinced her to have the Gardisil injection which has left her with ongoing health problems every since.

My second daughter however was not so fortunate.   From the night of her vaccination at four months, she went from a happy, healthy baby, who slept through the night, to a brain damaged distressed child who did not sleep for over two years.   She did not walk till she was four or talk till she was seven.   She is basically autistic with mental age about eight years of age.   At the current age of 24, she has cost, not only her family, but the community/taxpayers a massive amount of money to assist her through schooling and development and therapy.   Hers is not an isolated case.   Can you imagine how many others there are like her out there, or how, in the years ahead, as more and more children receive more and more vaccinations before even school age, there will be a major increase in chronic disease across our population? I cannot begin to tell you what this experience has taught me, but that is minor in comparison with what it has put my daughter through, and what she will have to endure for the rest of her life.

Me?  I now choose.   And I fight for my choice.  You see, I did not vaccinate my third and fourth children.   Because I would rather take my chances with Mother nature.   She neither profits or loses when it comes to my children’s wellbeing.   Pharmaceutical companies are there to make money first, and I don’t believe they even consider the health of our future generations in their drive for profit.   I know that as grim as it sounds, if I had the choice, I would rather one of my children got sick and died from a natural disease, than watch a healthy child receive a vaccination and then get sick or die from that.

So you see, choice is everything.

And I am very grateful that you do not bow to the bullies and let them silence one side of the vaccination debate.

Thank you.   I wish you every success with your festival and hope you all have a wonderful event!



AVN’s participation at Woodford

Good evening everybody

I’m up working late and I’ve noticed that there’s an email from the AVN in my inbox. Meryl is letting her members know that some groups that fear freedom of information are petitioning you to get a couple of segments that they are holding at your Festival cancelled.

My initial thought was not too worry as the folks who run the Woodford Folk Festival would not be the sort of people who would buy into censorship of information. The people who frequent the Festival are certainly not that type of person. I’ve been a number of times. To me the Festival is all about life, people, relationships, music, living with spirit, and the sharing of information.

But I’d thought I’d better send something, just in case. 

I’m  a member of the AVN and find their information factual, balanced, and extremely important. They offer an education on the subject of vaccination so parents are able to make an informed choice. And it’s always the parent’s choice and that is always made clear. But at least they have some impartial information to help them. You won’t find a more balanced representation of the subject of vaccination than the AVN.

What they offer is a perfect fit for the Woodford Folk Festival. The Festival and any sponsors that are associated with it, will benefit from the supporting the AVN in the eyes of anyone who attends.

The fact that there is an organisation who has been setup to specifically harass the AVN should tell you that what the AVN has to say is very close to the mark. It’s important, and you are doing a service to the community by hosting them at your event.

Here’s to a great Festival!



Support for Woodford organisers re Freedom of Communication

To whom it may concern,

I wish to express my support for Woodford Festival organisers and sponsors in allowing the issue of vaccination to be aired as I feel there is a real need in the community for information on both sides of the vaccination issue. When people are made aware of the choices and options available in regard to vaccination they’re able to make informed decisions from an empowered position rather than acting out of fear like I did as a young mum. I’ve been researching health and vaccination for several years and now believe my health and the health of my children has been compromised as a result of receiving childhood vaccinations. I’ve discovered I’m sensitive to heavy metals and my body does not get rid of them very well which increases my susceptibility to adverse reactions from vaccinations. After reading much information and watching DVD’s I recently attended an enlightening talk by Meryl Dorey from the Australian Vaccination Network about Childhood Vaccination. The information Meryl presented was easy to understand and answered many questions for me such as:

  • Why do vaccinated children contract the very diseases they are vaccinated against?
  • Why don’t vaccinations guarantee immunity like I was lead to believe?
  • Why has the number of vaccines gone from 18 just 23 years ago to over 50 by the time a child starts school including over 23 within the first year of life?
  • What options do I have to immunise my child other than vaccination and what are the immunity rates compared to vaccination?
  • Where do I find a GP who will support me if I choose an alternative way to immunise my child?

I am very grateful to the AVN for working to help parents like me take back the right to free and informed choice by allowing them to see the less publicised side of this important issue before making a decision.

Thank you again for allowing and encouraging freedom of communication at the Woodford FestivalJ

Warm regards,


Bunbury WA 6231

Freedom of thought, Freedom of choice to vaccinate or not

Hello there Woodford family,

I am writing to express my support of Meryl Dorey from the AVN and gratitude that Woodford Folk Festival has her presenting this year. I feel it is a wonderful choice to have her insight and talk at the Woodford Folk Festival on vaccination. It makes me feel good to know that there is places like the Folkie honouring and supporting our freedom of choice as individuals and the different aspects or sides to a story, and in turn allows one to honestly look inside ourself and think outside the circle we are so conditioned to think, feel, act out by society. To always challenge the other side of thought, to whatever degree, is a necessary process in the life venture of self truth and self growth. It allows oneself to come to an honest conclusion for the greater good for themselves and those who are around them.

Living in a world where mass production is prevalent, i feel the importance to challenge these mass practices because we are all individual and therefore have individual needs, and mass practice certainly does not cater for this individuality. I am appalled at the righteous and ignorant stance/attitude of the SAVN and other anti-choice organisations toward AVN and what it stands for as brings suspicion to mind that they have something to hide, and a blatant care-less attitude toward the choice of the individual; and when it comes down to it that means they care-less about “me” and “my” freedom of choice. So i applaud you for believing in “me” and “my” freedom of choice and for choosing the very best life for my children, by having Meryl on behalf of AVN speak about. Because it is not about the political and righteous quest of who is right from the SAVN, it is about our precious children and about the diligent and tough decision as a parent to make the best choice for their life and health. Whoa, it’s a huge decision to make for another being and i don’t know many parents, or if any, that don’t pause to think it over somewhat, to any degree.

I have grown up with the Folkie being apart of my life since it was in Maleny…it has been one of those strong hold practices in my life where I could always go and find peace in allowing my true self to unfold naturally and with loving support of the environment and people around. It gave me insight into the choices of different material & information available. I LOVED that Woodford Folkie has been there for me as a positive example of community and a place for me to express my truth or myself as i know it with others who are open, caring and sharing. For this i thank you!!

I am sure you have some kind of agreeance as you have Meryl speaking at the Festival, I just wanted to say this incase you were thinking that it may not be such a great idea, from the pressures from the SAVN and sponsors. It doesn’t seem right that they think it is their right to make this decision for me. Please keep Meryl on the Festival programme.

Kindest Regards,


Vaccination Choice

Dear Organisers

I am writing in relation to recent blogs on the Mamamia website.  I don’t normally read this website as personally I am not interested in Mia Freedman or anything she has to say, I have seen her from time to time when I have watched commercial television and normally this is when I choose to either change the channel or get myself a cup of tea.

I believe we live in a society where choice is available for all as is the choice to either listen or to walk away, just as I have a choice to change a channel if I don’t want to watch something.  We also have the freedom of choice in this country to vaccinate or not vaccinate.

The main demographic that chooses not to vaccinate are people just like me – tertiary educated often with more than one degree, intelligent career people, older age parents.  All of the people I know, including myself have done extensive research into the pros and cons of vaccination, I have utilised the resources of the AVN – purchased many books on the topic written by doctors, professionals with PHD’s and other such qualifications.  What qualifications does Mia Freedman have in this field?  I have also carried out my own investigations with overseas entities as well.  It is an informed choice I have made not to immunise my children as it is for many others that I know of.  Others that I know that do not immunise have chosen not to because their first child was injured as a result of immunisation so subsequent children have not been immunised.  The media all too often only report one side of a story, I know this from experience during my 20 year career in the legal field.  In relation to the Dana McCaffrey tragedy, although I didn’t watch Mia Freedmans’ interview I did watch the segment on 60 minutes some time ago.  There were a lot of questions that were not asked by the interviewer such as whether the family were immunised against pertussis and when they were immunised, again a one sided media report focussed on frightening the public into immunising.  Interestingly you rarely see a live interview on such topics as it doesn’t enable certain material to end up on the cutting room floor.  This is how the media work, I also know this from experience having worked closely with someone who formerly directed 60 minutes for many years.

Without the AVN and the work Meryl does I believe this country would be without choice.  Recently the government announced that it would penalise parents financially via the parental payment if they didn’t immunise their children.  Only 10% of Australia’s child population are not immunised so really one has to wonder why the government is pushing this so hard for a minority population and what is behind it.  The AVN are in the process of obtaining legal advice as to whether this contravenes our constitution.  The AVN are also lobying government to implement a register of disease outbreaks amongst our population of the people infected and the percentages of these infected people that were immunised.  Other countries have this in place and it is an accurate indicator of whether vaccines are effective or not.  In Australia we would have no idea as no such register is in place.  One has to wonder why our government is not in favour of such a register.

There is so much media hype and advertising in support of vaccination, of course there would be as pharmaceutical companies have plenty of money to support this.

I live Queensland and support Woodford.  I believe it is important for people like Meryl to be able to appear at such public events.  What sort of country are we if we shut down and exclude people from talking about topics that 100% of the population may not necessarily have an opinion on or not believe in.  Everyone is different and entitled to their opinions and beliefs.  We don’t shut down other religions or cultures in Australia, we try to embrace them.  Australia needs to remain a place for freedom of speech and choice.

Thankyou for your time.

Yours sincerely


Brisbane QLD

In support of freedom


I just want to congratulate you on your support for  the right of all of us to have access to different information, so that we can make informed choices, by inviting this controversial speaker on childhood vaccination to present her research at your festival.

For your information on the vaccine debate, there are many medical doctors who do not support the industry-promulgated view – and show good reasons and research for it.

Here is one example:

Yours sincerely,


I support you having AVN spokesperson at Woodford Festival 

Hello Bill, Ingrid and all members of the Organising Committee,

I decided 34 years ago when our first child was born not to vaccinate her because a friend knew a little boy who had recently reacted to a vaccination and was brain damaged.

There was a little information and I found support from alternate health sources, chiropractic, herbalist, naturopath and osteopath.  I took responsibility for good health choices and learned to become aware of how certain foods can assist good health when illness did occur.  I relied on herbs and vitamin supplements as well as the alternate health practioners.

We had three children and they are now starting their own families and want to have the option to follow the same alternate health practices.

They have needed to access the wealth of resources and information available from the AVN to present information to their partners so together they can make informed decisions regarding Immunisations for their children.

Having together reached the decision not to vaccinate, they have now also felt supported not just by the information and resources but also glad to have the AVN as a forum of support from other people who are increasingly questioning the effects of so many vaccinations on newborn babies.

I am so glad you are providing a space in your festival to allow such debate as has been going on within our families over the past 3-4 years.

My kids started to realise the strong immunity they had developed due to alternate health practices and self-knowledge, when their teenage friends would comment “How come you never get sick and have to go to the doctor”?

It wasn’t luck, it was information and good choices.

I support AVN as do my adult kids for several reasons.

One major reason is that AVN is fighting (because they have to) for the rights of families to choose a health option for their children, because like me, they have genuine concerns regarding the safety and effectiveness, OR the number of vaccines being given, OR the option to only have certain vaccines, OR the desire to spread the vaccines over a different time frame.

There is much to debate here.

This is the “INFORMATION AGE” so why is this information not discussed?


Our society like never before has embraced & accepted freedom of choice:-

  • Freedom from discrimination regarding sexual preference and practice.
  • Freedom OF religion and indeed freedom FROM religious dogma.
  • Freedom to protest on any number of environmental issues eg;
  • logging, mining, wood chipping, coal seam gas etc.

Never has there been so much information and medical reports about the effects and damage done to children due to vaccines.

Surely the freeom of choice for parents concerned about their children is just as important.


Choices at Woodford

Hello Bill and Ingrid,

I just wanted to show my support for Meryl Dorey speaking at the Woodford Folk Festival.  As a parent that is trying to make an informed decision about their child’s health, I’ve found it very hard to find enough balanced discussions about the pro’s and con’s of vaccinating.  As a citizen it concerns me that there aren’t enough platforms encouraging healthy debate.  With biased media and powerful vested interests it is in our community gatherings such as your folk festival where we can hope to have freedom to voice and to hear alternative points of view’s.  I hope you will be persuaded by the love that Meryl brings to her work and not the hate of those who cannot stand reason and balance.

With love and full support of your wonderful festival,




My name is MH and it has come to my attention that certain very vindictive parties are waging a war against freedom of choice at Woodford this year.  While Meryl Dorey probably has other things she could be doing in the holidays with her family, she has given up this special time to spend time providing a much needed alternative view on vaccination.

My personal experience with vaccination is that my eldest daughter was vaccine damaged at 3 months.  Just hours after her second injection she was covered with a violent rash this rash has plagued my daughter throughout her childhood and teenage years.  When I went to report this to the doctor, I was told this was just co-incidence….  I know now having spoken to many other parents of vaccine damaged kids that I am not alone.  People need to be given complete information so they can make informed decisions.

I have spent many hours researching the subject of vaccination over many years – in the early days it wasn’t so easy, today the internet provides many reliable sources of documentation on the subject of vaccination.

The Australian Vaccination Network helped me in many ways, providing assistance with information, practitioners and how to go about conscientious objection as we didn’t want the same thing to happen to my second daughter. I also discovered a network of friends who, after 15 years are still my closest friends.

Woodford has been recognised as a outlet for free thinking, and this is an issue that really needs to be given some fair air play

Thanks for giving this a hearing

Best wishes for woodford


Vaccination Choice


It has come to my notice that certain bodies are trying to prevent debate on the vaccination issue by bringing pressure to bear on the organisers and sponsors of the Woodford Folk Festival to cancel talks given by Meryl Dorey from the Australian Vaccination Network.

I wish to express my deep concern that such bodies can have enough influence to prevent freedom of speech and robust debate on issues that are important to all parents. Regardless of whether one agrees or disagrees with vaccination it is important that the issue is out in the open and the facts are presented to people so that they can make up their minds after considering both sides of the discussion.

I strongly urge the organisers and sponsors of the Woodford Folk Festival  to resist this push to cancel Meryl Dorey’s talks and to uphold what we in Australia cherish as a national right to have freedom of speech and freedom of choice.

Yours faithfully


Concerned Citizen

AVN appearance at festival

Hi there,

I was alarmed to hear that Stop the AVN (SAVN) is once again trying to censure free speech and have started a campaign of cyber bullying via blogs and threats to boycott sponsors of the festival. It is alarming because we live in a country where not everyone agrees on every subject but where, when not in agreement we can debate the issue, get all evidence of the message across and either agree or agree to disagree. In this case once again they think there is no debate and there is only one side of the story which is so alarmingly false that is almost laughable except that it is a deadly serious subject.

I have done years of research on the subject of vaccination and I myself would make them look silly if we debated the subject.  I have come to the conclusion that any sane person who injects known poisons and toxins into children is either evil or totally ignorant. As i’m sure it is mostly ignorance because we have always been known to trust our doctors advice and of course the oh so trustworthy Pharma companies and government who are all out to only help.  I started researching the subject as I was having a child and someone close I know who has an autistic child told me that not only did she KNOW her child started showing signs of autism right after the vaccinations but that her doctor also told her that was the case. Now as i’m sure the doctor won’t go on the record and say that as he will lose his medical license, I also found out she has a friend with 2 out of 3 kids with autism and she says exactly the same thing. So the SAVN can tell me, with their obviously limited knowledge on vaccines, as much as they like that vaccines don’t cause autism but i think i’ll believe all the parents over the doctors any day.

One thing I heard a lot before I had my child was from parents of unvaccinated children who they said were rarely ever sick and rarely go to the doctors. (gee that must hurt the industry if no one is actually going to the doctors because they are actually healthy) And lo and behold my unvaccinated child is rarely sick and has been to the doctors maybe 4 times in her young 2 and half years. (Same thing with my brothers unvaccinated kids by the way). Whilst all around me the vaccinated kids are sick almost every other day and spend more time at the doctors than playing and learning. Oh and also she is said to be 8 months more advanced with her speech and learning capabilities. Coincidence…. oh i’m sure the SAVN will tell you it is, but i’m here to tell you it’s not. This is getting beyond a joke and although it hurts to watch all my friends and others around us vaccinate their children without doing a single hour of research on the subject, just blindly following government protocol, I understand that it is THEIR CHOICE and I feel strongly that we are all capable of making our own decisions based on how we raise our children. And for you to not allow the AVN to show their evidence and get their INFORMED point across would be unfair, unjust and quite frankly evil.

By the way if you or anyone at the SAVN have any doubts that vaccinations are in any way linked to autism maybe you should just watch this clip which is a interview with the head of the CDC at the time Julie Gerberding ADMITTING vaccines can trigger autism.

just copy and paste

Oh and by the way Julie went on after working as the head of the CDC to working at Merck the giant Pharma company. Conflict of interest. The SAVN will say Of course not

Again we all have the right to use information as we want but that shouldn’t stop the evidence from being put forth. As more and more people are waking up to this and who knows, maybe even you could learn a few thing form this information. It certainly wouldn’t hurt. And if you decide that the information is wrong and that it’s fine to pump neurotoxins into your children then that’s fine. I won’t hold it against you as you shouldn’t against me if I decide not to vaccinate. Rhetorical….

Thanks for listening and please let the information by the AVN be spoken.


Woodford Festival

Just want to say thank you for having Meryl Dorey as a speaker and I appreciate how difficult it must be with pressure from some to have her taken off the speaker list.

Free speech and access to medical data always needs to be preserved in a free and civilised society

I have personally known Meryl for over 14 years. She has always been the utmost professional, soley committed to keeping children and adults fully informed about health choices and ensuring medical products are fairly scrutinised. If we supress an individual like this, what does that say about our society? I researched my decision on vaccines for my children from worldwide research, and the AVN was just one of my sources. Every country has a vaccine safety lobby group like the AVN.

I myself have a university degree and a background in writing and research, but many people do not have skills like this, so there is a great need for people like Meryl to bring the current medical data on vaccination and related issues to them. We need other sources of information other than the Health Department or we are not a free society. Thank you for your continued support of Meryl Dorey and free speech.



free speech at Woodford

Dear Sir,

I am writing to express my support for freedom of expression at Woodford.

It has been brought to my attention that a vaccination lobby group has requested that Meryl Dorey be removed from the programme this year.

If this this were to be done, it would be a sad day for democracy in this country. To think that even at Woodford, the interests of multinational drug companies could override the basic right for people to say what they believe in a public forum, would be very troubling indeed.

Regardless of an individual’s stance on any topic, we should always honour the right to open debate. We should constantly strive to maintain respect for the fact that there are two sides to every argument.

I am a parent who has chosen not to vaccinate my children.

Having once been a staunch supporter of vaccination, it has been though 10 years of inquiry and personal experience that I made this decision.

Having studied medical sciences at university, I believe that I have the intellect and understanding required to make sound judgement on the issue.

I believe that we all should have access to information, and be able to make our own choices, based on careful examination of the facts.

People like Meryl Dorey should be applauded for her courage in continuing to bring information to the wider public, so that they can make an informed choice, despite the threats she receives.

I encourage you to support freedom of speech and allow Ms. Dorey to remain on the programme.

Many thanks,


Keeping Meryl at Woodford

Dear Mr Hauritz

I would like to thank you for allowing Meryl Dorey to speak at Woodford, a group of us are very much looking forward to her speech and looking forward to meeting her.  Without Meryl there would be little information regarding vaccination choice and injury.  I have a 5 year old boy who was vaccine injured at 11 months old and has since been diagnosed with autism.  If it wasn’t for the information of the AVN I would not have been aware there were choices and not aware of the massive scope of vaccine related injuries.

My mother and I are long followers of the AVN and we are attending the festival solely to see Meryl.  Thank you for the opportunity.






The ‘Myth’ of mercury

To continue with my critique of Dr Rachael Dunlop’s blog, 9 vaccination myths busted. With science! I would like to discuss the second ‘myth’ about whether or not vaccines contain mercury.

Dr Rachie has often stated that doctors are the experts when it comes to vaccination and they know more about the subject then parents. Therefore, parents should just listen to their doctors when they are advised to vaccinate their children.

The assumption is that since Rachie is a doctor (though not a medical doctor), she has superior expertise on the subject of vaccination and her statements should be accepted without question. But we are talking about science and in science, nothing is above question. So when Dr Rachie says that:

Mercury has not been present in routine childhood vaccines in Australia since 2000 and it was never in the MMR vaccine. Prior to 2000, thimerosal [thiomersal in Australia], an organomercury compound, was used in the manufacturing process of vaccines as a preservative. The process left only trace amounts in the finished product – you ingest more mercury when you eat a can of tuna than you would ever get from a vaccine.”

One would assume that, with her experience of the medical world and knowledge of medicine, she would know what she is talking about. Unfortunately however, her statement about mercury and vaccines is completely wrong.

Mercury is still in vaccines administered to children and in fact, it was never removed completely.

Medical ignorance

One can’t necessarily blame Dr Rachie completely for making such an obvious error. After all, she has relied upon yet another ‘expert’ for her information, Dr Sue Page from the Vax’em! Website.

But despite their combined expertise, knowledge and education, these health professionals have made a very basic mistake when it comes to their knowledge of vaccination – a mistake that could have been very easily avoided had they simply done some basic research first.

You see, not only has mercury  never been removed from all routine childhood vaccines, but some vaccines which manufacturers claim have always been free from mercury actually contain it.

In a recently-published study, it was revealed that the Infanrix hexa vaccine – a 7-in-1 shot that has supposedly always been completely free of thiomersal, contains between 9 and 10 ppm.[1]

To put things into context, the American Environmental Protection Agency states that water must contain no more than .002 ppm of mercury because at levesl higher than this, “has been shown to damage the kidneys of laboratory animals such as rats when the animals are exposed at high levels over their lifetimes.”[2] Yet this study of the infanrix vaccine finds mercury levels of between 9 and 10 ppm – exponentially higher quantities than those deemed unsafe in drinking water.

Please note – the above information is incorrect. The article states that the amount is in parts per billion (PPB) not parts per million (PPM) so the level is mercury is below the safe limit according to government but it is still there when the manufacturer says it is not. My apologies for this error (MD)

The authors state that,

“Although the levels of Hg (mercury) detected are substantially lower than any established exposure safety limits, the results of this study reveal that inaccuracies exist in public health messages, professional communications, and official documentation regarding Hg content in at least one childhood vaccine. In the interests of public health, it is incumbent on vaccine manufacturers and responsible agencies such as the Therapeutic Goods Administration and the Federal Department of Health and Ageing to address this issue as a matter of urgency.”


But what are the ‘responsible’ public health officials doing about the residual mercury in vaccines that are supposed to be mercury free? Are they out there demanding that safety comes first? Are they lobbying the federal government or the department of health to ensure that drug companies abide by labelling regulations so that health professionals and consumers can make informed decisions about what they are injecting?

No, instead of behaving in a responsible manner, they are covering up the fact that childhood vaccines still contain mercury and indeed, they probably always have!

It is the vaccine safety organisations like the AVN that are doing the work of trying to ensure that vaccine information is truthful and complete – no thanks to Dr Rachie and her ilk. Because remember, Dr Rachie insists that there is no mercury in vaccines on the childhood schedule – a claim that has now been proven to be completely incorrect!

Dr Rachie then goes on to state that:


“Also there are two types of mercury – methyl mercury is the scary environmental toxin that “bioaccumulates” in your body, and ethyl mercury the type found in thimerosal, which does not bioaccumulate.”


Dr Rachie is correct when she says that thiomersal contains ethylmercury. But that is about the only thing she has said that is correct.

The reason we are told that ethylmercury is a safe form of mercury (a true oxymoron since mercury is one of the most toxic substances known to man – no matter what form it is found in), is because it is not supposed to bioaccumulate or build up in the body.

This does not appear to be the case, however.

On the Activist Post’s website,[3] a recently published article describes why it is that the body may be metabolising  the ethylmercury in thiomersal, changing it into both the more dangerous methylmercury as well as the incredibly toxic inorganic mercury.

“Unexpectedly, the rats treated with Thimerosal (ethylmercury) were found to have three types of mercury in the blood samples and their organs, ethylmercury (the originating “supposedly harmless” compound), methylmercury (the admittedly harmful compound) and inorganic mercury (the most harmful, tissue bound end product of mercury metabolism).

This observation begs an answer to the question: Where did the “methylmercury” come from since this group was only originally and solely treated with Thimerosal (an “ethylmercury” compound)?

Based on the published findings in the three groups of rats, the metabolic pathway for organic mercury involves the conversion of Ethylmercury (Thimerosal) into “methylmercury” and then the further reduction of “methylmercury” into inorganic mercury.

It may be that some of the “ethylmercury” (from Thimerosal) are also directly converted into inorganic mercury. However, there are apparently no studies, in either humans or other animals, that establishes the biochemical conversion of ethylmercury compounds directly into the “inorganic” mercury.”

 So Rachie is again incorrect in her assumption that ethylmercury is safe.

Lastly, she states that:


“If thimerosal was implicated in autism, you would expect a significant drop in cases after its removal. Instead the opposite is true – autism rates continue to rise.”


Of course, you would only expect to see this drop if one of the following two factors were true:

1-    If mercury were really removed from all vaccines as we had been told; and

2-    If mercury were the only neurotoxin in vaccines. Vaccinations contain a broad range of substances which are known to be toxic to the brain. These include aluminium, 2PE (the substance which was added to vaccinations when mercury was removed) and more.

Since mercury was never removed and it is but one of many neurotoxic substances in vaccines, it is not surprising that rates of autism have continued to climb.

The only way to finally determine once and for all whether vaccines are or are not associated with autism is to have a study comparing the rates in the fully vaccinated as compared with the never vaccinated. This is a study that the government steadfastly refuses to do.

Perhaps they are too concerned that should this study be done, they will be held to account for the tens of thousands of Australian children and adults whose autism was caused by vaccines?

For more information on the evidence of risk from exposure to thiomersal, Please visit these two pages from the excellent Vaccination News Website:

In conclusion

Has science (in the name of Dr Rachie) shown that mercury in childhood vaccines is a myth ?

[1] Mercury in vaccines from the Australian childhood immunization program schedule; Austin DW, Shandley KA, Palombo EA.J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2010;73(10):637-40.



Vaccination Myths – busting the mainstream beliefs

Dr Rachael Dunlop is Vice President of the Australian Skeptics and one of the lead movers and shakers behind the Stop the AVN organisation. This group was set up with the specific goal of forcing our community-based vaccine-safety organisation to close. They deny that we have the right of freedom of speech in Australia, claiming that those who question the safety and effectiveness of vaccines are a danger to society and as such, they must be stopped.

As part of her campaign to ‘expose’ the myths discussed by those who question vaccination, she recently posted an article on the blog entitled, 9 vaccination myths busted. With science!

I would like to take this opportunity to critique the science behind the claims made by Dr Dunlop in the interests of encouraging an open and honest scientific debate about this issue which is the whole reason for being of the AVN. Since it will take a bit of time to go through all of Dunlop’s claims, I expect that this blog response will run over several days.

Dr Google and the brainless public

In her introduction, Dr Rachie (as she likes to refer to herself), bemoans the fact that, “A recent survey found more than two thirds of us research our medications on-line and half of us turn to “Dr Google” for diagnosis.”  She seems to feel that this is a bad thing because, “60% of the results will not only be misleading but downright scary.”

My issue with this attitude stems from a common belief amongst medical professionals that people without medical degrees are not capable of understanding medical information and therefore, they should just listen to doctors – the real experts when it comes to medical decisions – and not question anything they are told.

My fervent belief, after almost 20 years of speaking with parents who question vaccination, is that the vast majority of them only started questioning because of the following:

1-    They saw their own child become sick, regress or die within a short time of a vaccine (and you try telling these parents that correlation doesn’t equal causality when they have seen the evidence in their own family!).

2-    They have a close family member who was sickened or killed by a vaccine.

3-    Their own education at school (medical school, nursing school, chiropractic college, etc. led them to look further into this issue)

4-    They are interested in natural health and wanted to make informed decisions about every issue surrounding their children’s health including full disclosure of the ingredients and side effects of therapies recommended by doctors.

Despite the fact that most of these individuals are not health professionals, they all were capable of understanding the evidence surrounding the vaccination issue.  They were also very good at detecting bullshit from their doctors or from the government.

Though Dr Rachie seems to imply that a visit to “Dr Google” is a complete waste of time, the good online doctor provides an incredibly rich resource for obtaining medical journal articles, manufacturer’s package inserts and studies on both sides of this issue. I get the distinct impression, though I could be wrong, that people like Dr Rachie long for the ‘good old days’ when much of the information about medicine was written in German, Greek or Latin as a way of keeping this knowledge secret from those who were not initiates of their mysteries.

In any case, whilst Dr Rachie feels that Dr Google is not an appropriate source of information, the fact is that parents are using it and if they are frightened, that fright might stem from the more than 18,000 people each year who die from preventable medical error and adverse reactions to properly prescribed medications – a figure that certainly scares me! Wanting to be cautious after hearing about this is not a sign of being ill-informed – it is the exact opposite.

In 1995, The Quality in Australian Health Care Study estimated that there were more than 12,000 Australians dying every year as a result of preventable medical error. Within a decade, that estimate rose to over 18,000.

We have no idea what the figure is today because it has not been studied but according to Jeff Richardson, a professor of health economics at Monash University,

“’The issue of adverse events in the Australian health system should dominate all others. However, it would be closer to the truth to describe it as Australia’s best kept secret,” he said. Professor Richardson called for compulsory reporting and more audits of adverse events. He said doctors who did report adverse events should be immune from prosecution and only subjected to peer review, counselling and deregistration if necessary.”[1]

In the US, that figure is estimated to be as high as 1 million deaths each year (Death by Medicine, Dr Gary Null) and yet, the US government, like the government here in Australia, seems to ignore these tragedies in favour of attacking and suppressing safer, more natural, effective  alternatives.

Science is in the eye of the beholder

Dr Rachie claims that up to 60% of the information we get on the internet is incorrect and her reference for this statement is a ‘study’ from the Journal of Health Communication referred to above. The authors of this article, published in September 2005, did web searches using several different search engines. The found that 60% of the results obtained when using various spellings of the words vaccination and immunisation were linking to web sites that were critical of vaccination or were proponents of vaccine safety whilst only 40% of the links pointed to government or medical community websites. Therefore, according to the authors of this report, 60% of the information on vaccination is misleading and incorrect.

Interestingly, most of the 60% of websites which question vaccines contain a high number of articles and a large percentage of their information sourced from mainstream peer-reviewed journals. So is it true that these websites are misleading and incorrect, or is it more likely the case that simply questioning vaccination makes these sites a threat to entrenched financial interests and therefore, they must be considered in their entirety to be wrong?

One such example of this attitude is the site. This web page, one of the oldest on the internet dealing with the issues of vaccination and natural health (and a broad range of other areas), was set up by a farmer in Wales (UK) who has spent an incredible amount of time gathering together information on the subject of vaccination. Much of the information on this page has come directly from mainstream journals such as the Lancet, the New England Journal of Medicine, Paediatrics, and more. Yet when someone uses a citation from this page – even one that cites a mainstream source – it is dismissed out of hand as being just from ‘’ as if to say that it is completely discredited as a result.

The same information, cited on one of the medical community’s pages, is an acceptable reference, but somehow, once it passes through a site that questions the veracity or intelligence of mainstream medicine, it is no longer an appropriate citation!

The AVN says that the internet is a perfectly fit and proper place to obtain information about health and we believe that parents are capable of understanding what is good information vs what is bad. They can understand why information from vested interests may not be acceptable whilst independent sources may be more likely to be correct.

And just as there would be vaccine-safety sites which contain a mix of correct and incorrect information, so too you will find that government and mainstream medical sites also have that same mix. As for the sites run or funded by the pharmaceutical companies, one would have to take what they say with more than a grain of salt since pharmaceutical corruption is a known confounder of results both within their own websites and press releases as well as in the journals they finance.

Myth 1: Vaccines cause autism

The first ‘myth’ that Dr Rachie deals with is the one that has probably garnered the most attention both within the media and the medical community as well as amongst health consumers. That is the question of whether vaccination is linked in any way with the development of autism.

She claims thatSince 1998 there have been countless large and comprehensive studies looking for a link between vaccines and autism, but the evidence keeps coming up negative.” Strangely, she hasn’t cited any of those countless studies. Perhaps because she is well aware that the majority of them are broad population-based epidemiological studies or retrospective analyses of older studies which were never meant to look at the connection between vaccination and autism.

Dr Bernardine Healy, former head of the National Institutes of Health in the US, stated that,

“…public health officials have intentionally avoided researching whether subsets of children are “susceptible” to vaccine side effects – afraid the answer will scare the public. …There is a completely expressed concern that they don’t want to pursue a hypothesis because that hypothesis could be damaging to the public health community at large by scaring people. “First of all,” Healy said, “I think the public’s smarter than that. The public values vaccines. But more importantly, I don’t think you should ever turn your back on any scientific hypothesis because you’re afraid of what it might show.”[2]

So what we have here is a government and a medical community who are happy to continue to claim that there is no evidence that vaccines cause autism whilst they resist doing any clinical trials to prove or disprove that theory. And whilst it is true that their studies, which were designed in such a way that any links between vaccination and autism would not show up, don’t show a link, it is also true that the studies that would determine whether or not vaccines are causally related to autism have never been done.

For decades, vaccine safety proponents like the AVN have been urging the government to fund studies comparing autism in the vaccinated vs the fully unvaccinated. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) promised 10 years ago that such a study would be performed. We are still waiting.

A recent study out of Germany is now being tossed about as proof positive that we have now compared the vaccinated with the unvaccinated and shown once and for all that vaccines don’t cause adverse health effects including autism.

The paper is entitled, Vaccination Status and Health in Children and Adolescents[3]. In this study which is available online, a group of 13,359 vaccinated children were compared with a group of 94 unvaccinated children.

It does not take a statistician to determine that if you want to be truly scientific, you need to have groups of similar sizes, otherwise, the outcomes don’t mean much (if anything).

Attack the messenger to suppress the message

Dr Rachie then goes on the attack against Dr Wakefield for his “Callous Disregard” of children under his care. These were the charges that Wakefield faced when he became the first scientist in recent years to publish an hypothesis which said that vaccination might be related to autism and asked that more study be done.

Brian Deer is a freelance journalist for the Sunday Times – a Murdoch newspaper run by James Murdoch who coincidentally, also sits on the board of Glaxo SmithKline – a manufacturer of the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine. Deer was the original complainant against Wakefield to the General Medical Council, the body that eventually revoked Wakefield’s license to practice medicine as well as citing two of Wakefield’s co-authors, Simon Murch and John Walker-Smith.

For those who would like to read more about the issues surrounding the attacks against these caring and ethical doctors – all in the name of pharmaceutical profits and protection of the medical status quo at the cost of our children, I highly recommend the following excellent books:

Callous Disregard – by Dr Andrew Wakefield

Silenced Witnesses 1 and 2, edited by Martin J. Walker

Wakefield’s case series – not study – described the experience of 12 families whose children regressed into autism with signs of serious gut involvement following MMR vaccine. When it was first published, Wakefield called for the MMR vaccine to be split up so that parents could have the choice of whether to give their children the 3-in-1 shot which had never been properly tested for safety or the individual vaccines. Almost immediately, the UK government withdrew the license for individual measles and rubella vaccines, leading to a decline in vaccine compliance.

Wakefield advised caution until the connection between the MMR and bowel and neurological symptoms could be ruled out. He never advised parents not to vaccinate and in fact, said that his own children were vaccinated but that we must be able to ensure that vaccines were as safe as possible before urging families to give them to their children.

For this ‘heresy’, Wakefield and those ethical doctors who stood by the families of autistic children, were crucified by the GMC and the media.

Dr Rachie refers to a Danish study which purports to show that introduction of the MMR vaccine was not associated with an increase in autism.

I recommend that readers take the time to download and read the critiques of these studies (and more) that you can find at the Safe Minds website.[4] In the meantime, please look at this graph from Denmark (taken from one of the critiques on the Safe Minds website) showing quite clearly that introduction of the MMR vaccine was associated with an increase in Autism diagnoses.

Those who forget the lessons of history…

The saddest thing in the attacks against Wakefield et al, is that the link between vaccination and autism did not start in 1998. In fact, it did not even start with the MMR vaccine. The link was noted in the medical literature before there was even a word for autism. For a great perspective on this issue, I recommend the book by medical historian, Dr Harris Coulter, called Vaccination: Social Violence and Criminality.

From the early 1920s, a condition referred to as epidemic encephalitis started to be reported on in the medical literature. When children contracted epidemic encephalitis, the most common side effects were behavioural difficulties (lack of empathy, trouble sleeping, anger and aggression, etc.) and neurological symptoms such as seizures, tics, echolalia (though they did not use that word then, they did report on nonsense speaking and repetition of words) and mental retardation. In adults, the side effect that was reported most was Parkinson’s disease with its associated tremors.

Though there was no word for autism at that time or for almost 30 years after this point, the symptoms described were symptoms, which today, would most likely lead to a diagnosis of autism.

Epidemic encephalitis was described as following after vaccination – especially after vaccination with the monovalent whooping cough (pertussis) vaccine. In fact, several decades later, pertussis vaccines were used in laboratory animals to induce and study what was referred to as ‘acute allergic encephalomyelitis’ – a form of encephalitis (a swelling of the brain usually caused by an infection or a reaction to some toxic substance that has passed the blood-brain barrier), which is known to be caused by allergic reactions. Though this shot was used to induce the condition in laboratory animals, when the same thing happened in children who had recently been vaccinated, it was called coincidental.

One of the ingredients of the pertussis vaccine has been and is still today thiomersal – a mercury-based preservative that has been associated with an increased risk of neurological damage. (I will give more information about this issue when responding to another of Dr Rachie’s ‘vaccine myths’) Mercury, along with several other vaccine additives such as formaldehyde and aluminium, has the ability to break through the defences surrounding the central nervous system (the blood-brain barrier) and to allow infectious agents and toxins to reach this most vital area of our body. This is one of the reasons why the vaccine was used to induce encephalitis in laboratories since it is not easy to get through these defences.

Another of Dr Wakefield’s hypotheses in his initial 1998 case series – and one which was expanded upon by both Dr Wakefield and other independent researchers around the world, was the role that the gut plays in both protecting us from disease (Dr Wakefield is a gastroenterologist) and, when damaged by toxins, inducing autistic symptoms.

For those who have had children on the autistic spectrum who were recovered by biomedical treatments, you know that healing the gut will often lead to a reduction or a complete remission of the symptoms of autism.

One of the tragic consequences of the attacks on Wakefield, Murch and Walker-Smith has been the difficulty that parents now have in finding doctors who will treat their autistic children in the same way that these health professionals did. Though no parents complained about their treatment by Wakefield – in fact, they wanted to defend him before the GMC but were not allowed – it is now professional suicide to help children with autism in this way. As a result, many children who were getting better have stopped improving and in many cases, regressed as a result.

People who suppress this information, who are responsible for the attacks on Wakefield and his co-authors, are also responsible for the harm done to these children and the children who have come after them. It is my hope that when the dust settles and the truth finally does emerge (as it will), those who are responsible will be held accountable though it does nothing to help these children today.

Though Rachie seems to be trapped in a time warp beginning and ending in 1998 with Wakefield’s original paper, the fact is that the link between vaccination was discussed widely prior to Wakefield and by many others since that time.

For more information on these issues, I recommend reading the following book and papers:

The Age of Autism: Mercury, Medicine and a Man-Made Epidemic by Dan Olmsted and Mark Blaxill


V Uhlmann, C M Martin, O Sheils, L Pilkington, I Silva, A Killalea, S B Murch, J Walker-Smith, M Thomson, A J Wakefield, and J J O’Leary, ‘Potential viral pathogenic mechanism for new variant inflammatory bowel disease’, Molecular Pathology, Mol Pathol. 2002 April; 55(2): 84–90,


That Paper – by Dr Andrew Wakefield –


In conclusion

Has science (in the name of Dr Rachie) proven that the link between vaccination and autism is a myth?






Caught in the vaccination wars (Part 2)

As an introduction to this post, Dr Brian Martin, Vice President of Whistleblower’s Australia and Professor of Social Sciences at the University of Wollongong, took an interest in the attacks against the AVN about 18 months ago. His interest did not stem from any personal belief system regarding vaccination. Rather, as someone who is a strong believer in public debate and freedom of communication, he saw these attacks as an attempt to stifle the AVN’s right as a community group to participate in a debate that has been running for well over 200 years. His interest led him to write an article, Debating Vaccination, which describes the history of the efforts to force the AVN to close and the attacks on me personally to try to get me to step down from the organisation.

As a result of this article, Dr Martin came under attack by the same group of people. They actually contacted his boss at the University and tried to get him fired! Luckily, the University values free speech and the rights of citizens in democratic nations more than this group apparently does.

Dr Martin wrote an opinion piece in the Illawarra Mercury entitled, Shouting Down Our Freedom to Choose about these attacks and also about his correspondence with these people. I think this article shows very clearly the way in which some of our opponents think.

I once again want to say how much I appreciate Dr Martin’s taking up this cause – especially since he does not hold a strong opinion on vaccination per se – but simply because he values freedom as we all should.

Caught in the Vaccination Wars (Part 2)

On 26 June 2011, the Illawarra Mercury published my article “Shouting down our freedom to choose“. It summarises some of the points in my article “Debating vaccination“, which deals with the vaccination debate, the rationale for stopping the AVN and tactics used in the struggle between the AVN and its opponents.

The newspaper slightly edited my submitted text, including changing the title. The online version of the article allowed reader comments. There were 43 comments over the next 36 hours before the discussion was closed.

I appreciate the efforts of those who made comments on my article – including one sent to me directly. Here, I address a few of the points raised.

Click the link in the title to read more…

Click here to read the first part of this article, Caught in the Vaccination Wars (Part 1)

Hypocrisy – thy name is ‘SAVN’

It’s been a busy time here at the AVN so I haven’t been able to keep this blog as up-to-date as I would like, but the events of the last few days have been so ‘interesting’, I felt it would be a good time to share with you what has been going on.

As most of you would know, the organisation, Stop the AVN (SAVN) was set up specifically to force our group, which has been established since 1997, to close. Their tactics have included spurious complaints to government bodies and the media; the establishment of websites whose specific goal is to harass and denigrate anyone who believes that vaccination should be a matter of free and informed choice; death threats by phone, email and via Facebook; the sending of such vile pornography, it cannot be shared without blacking out most of the image (such as the letter below which was sent to my home address 3 times; trust me – you do NOT want to see the image that I’ve blacked out!); making threatening and abusive calls and sending abusive emails to our advertisers and professional members, trying to force them to withdraw their support of the AVN. There is more, but this is a good start in describing how these people operate and why, what they are doing now, is the height of hypocrisy!

One of the first things that SAVN did in their attempt to shut our organisation down was to establish several Facebook pages. They used our logo (and even called one of their pages Australian Vaccination Network which caused no end of confusion). Facebook made them remove our logo when I complained to them about this unauthorised use of our trademarked image, but they then took a ‘piece’ of our logo and used that until one of their own members who obviously has some experience with graphic design, made them a logo of their own based on the symbol in the movie, Ghostbusters.

From the beginning, SAVN made use of screen shots from our AVN Facebook page to attack not just myself, but others who posted there. It has become so scary for some of our members to share their knowledge and support on our Facebook page that they have either stopped posting altogether or signed up under assumed names so they will not be victimised in this way. Many people use their children’s photos as their Facebook profile picture and they started to be afraid that their children would be victimised as a result so they removed the images and put something more generic up as their profile picture. Others increased the security of their Facebook page, blocking access to anyone who was not already their friend on Facebook. All in all, it had reached a point where what we had established as a safe place to discuss research, experiences and news about vaccinations had become anything but.

AVN members began to complain to Facebook about these attacks and to ask that Facebook uphold their terms of service in regards to SAVN. Facebook says that:

Note: groups that attack a specific person or group of people (e.g. racist, sexist, or other hate groups) will not be tolerated. Creating such a group will result in the immediate termination of your Facebook account.

Despite these appeals to Facebook to stand by their own terms, nothing was done about the SAVN pages and their vile, abusive and harassing posts about the AVN, myself and our members.

Facebook also claims the following:

3- Safety

We do our best to keep Facebook safe, but we cannot guarantee it. We need your help to do that, which includes the following commitments:

  1. You will not bully, intimidate, or harass any user.
  2. You will not post content that: is hateful, threatening, or pornographic; incites violence; or contains nudity or graphic or gratuitous violence.

Well, people from the SAVN page have done all of these things – many times – and in many places. For instance, several of our members were sent incredibly violent pornographic images directly via Facebook. One of the images was forwarded to me and it was a shocker! It depicted a sexual act with a corpse. It was too horrendous to even begin to describe.

We showed this image to a university professor who is familiar with this area and he said that just showing that image was an offence – let alone sending it to someone else.

Facebook was informed of this by the recipients and they did absolutely nothing. So much for their claims to want to “keep Facebook safe”! Oh, and by the way, apart from being a member of the SAVN page (to be fair, SAVN did kick this person off after they were alerted to his abusive messages), this person works for a vaccine manufacturer. The company was also informed about his violent pornographic posts and to the best of our knowledge, nothing was done.

It had reached a point where you could set a stop watch between the time when someone posted something on the AVN’s Facebook page and the time when SAVN would screenshot it and put it on their page to tear down the person who wrote it – generally 5 minutes was all it took. It became obvious that these people had no real argument to fall back on. Indeed, abuse and harassment is their stock in trade.

Look at this example of a screenshot of one of my posts to the AVN page. This post was discussing an article from another website showing that experts who had testified that parents had killed their babies were now being discredited and it appeared that something other than child abuse – in fact, vaccines and pharmaceutical drugs – may have been the real reason for these children’s deaths. SAVN took this screen shot and below is what they made of it:

Is this the way to carry on a debate about vaccination? And whilst some of our opponents act independently of SAVN and without their knowledge or endorsement, SAVN is the most visible and active group opposing freedom of vaccination choice and part of a wider campaign that has been trying for some time to shut up any debate on this issue.

Several days ago, after hearing from yet more of our members about how they were not comfortable posting on our page because they did not want to leave themselves open to abuse, I decided to go through the SAVN page and find out what they were up to. What I found appalled me! Let’s just say that anything and everything that was on the AVN page was considered fair game for their abusive handling and I know that my words, my images and my posts are my own and they have no right to use them for any purpose without my express permission.

In two hours, I filed approximately 50 copyright claims against various Facebook members for using screenshots of my posts without my permission. I also filed reports against people who had used vile language to attack me – there were many attacks against others, but it was not up to me to report those – I only stuck to the ones that attacked me personally.

The upshot was that Facebook took down all of the posts and from what I understand, suspended a couple of the accounts for being repeat offenders. Don’t worry though, those people just set up new accounts and came back on and the SAVN page is still live.

The funny part is, that SAVN is trying to say that what I did was wrong and amounts to censorship. They say that I am denying their freedom of speech and until they can work out how to get around these regulations, they have made their page private so that no nasty pro-health choice people can read what they are writing and nobody can join unless and until they find the secret handshake required to prove you are a true believer in ‘science’.

I’ll tell you why this is so funny – I think you will agree with me that the irony and the hypocrisy in this situation is painfully obvious!

First, in regards to the freedom of speech and censorship issues, Ken McLeod, one of the founding and most active members of SAVN and the original complainant to the HCCC 2 years ago, stated in his complaint (which you can read in full by clicking here) that:

E- The AVN is not protected by any right of free speech.

Well, if the AVN and its membership are not protected by that right, why should SAVN be? Of course, this is a spurious argument because everyone in Australia is entitled to the free and open expression of ideas and debate – they are simply not entitled to harass, threaten, use pornography and foul language or any of the other things that SAVN does on a regular basis. They are not entitled to slander and defame either.

The membership of SAVN seem to feel that freedom of speech is only available to those who agree with them, however. To illustrate this fact, just prior to making their page private, some members of SAVN had been gloating that their tactic of calling into question not only my own ability to comment on this issue, but the ability, intelligence and truthfulness of all members of the AVN was working. They felt that due to their efforts to call us into question, nobody in the media would be contacting the AVN for comments on this issue any longer and therefore, they would no longer have to worry about the ‘false balance’ of journalists who wanted to discuss both sides of the vaccination debate. So much for freedom of speech and open access to information!

Second, they claimed that the complaints to Facebook were illegal and an abuse of policy.

Hmmmm, I find that to be interesting.

About a year or so ago, several members of our Facebook page started their own site called, Stop the AVN Exposed. They did this without my knowledge or involvement though they did invite me to view the pages and I did join for that purpose.

On this site, they took screenshots of some of the SAVN members’ posts and criticised them in much the same way that SAVN was criticising the posts of the AVN. It didn’t take more than a week or two but Facebook actually took the Stop the AVN Exposed site down due to complaints from SAVN members that the site had only been set up to attack them. Incredible double-standard on both the part of Facebook and SAVN.

So now, when the shoe is on the other foot, SAVN is crying to mama that it isn’t fair!  The AVN has gone and spoiled all of their fun and they are not going to come out and play any more until Facebook says they are sorry and returns all of their vile posts to where they were previously.

Well, I applaud Facebook for finally, after so many months of inaction, doing something to protect the innocent parents who frequent the AVN Facebook page and who only want a safe place where they can discuss an issue that is vital to the health of their families. My biggest complaint is that they took so long to do it and that they still have not made SAVN abide by Facebook’s terms and conditions when it comes to their bullying, intimidation and harassment of another organisation via their page – all of which is in direct contravention to Facebook’s own rules.

Stop the AVN has used every dispicable means possible to silence and villify the AVN. For them to call foul now is the height of hypocrisy.

Science and Skeptics – Ne’er the two shall meet

A young child is currently seriously ill in Gold Coast hospital Brisbane’s Mater Hospital (my apologies, the name of the hospital was incorrect in my original post), diagnosed with whooping cough (pertussis). Kailis Smith has not been vaccinated because he was too young. At only 6 weeks old, he is fighting for his life after contracting pertussis. While he has had many treatments for his pertussis including blood transfusions, his prognosis at this point in time is uncertain. I wish him and his family all the best for a complete recovery and a quick release from hospital.

Why do I bring this child up now? Well, a reporter with the Gold Coast Bulletin, Shannon Willoughby, has written an article about Kailis entitled Immunisation is a Must. In this article, Shannon says things like:

Anti-immunisation is just selfish. Plain and simple.; and,

With babies dying and children and adults once again contracting diseases that were virtually wiped out, there needs to be more of a tough line approach to immunisation.

She has not called for compulsory vaccination, but that is the implication here and it is an implication that should never, ever be raised by any reporter, especially one as ill-informed about this issue as Ms Willoughby.

This article and Kailis’ case has been cynically used by the Skeptics and Stop the AVN for their own purposes of blaming the unvaccinated for the upsurge in pertussis that has been evident in Australia for the last 3 years and around the world for the last 20.

For people who claim to worship science and abhor anything smacking of pseudo-science, the skeptics have an amazing ability to ignore anything scientifically-based that disagrees with their worldview. This sort of denial is something you are more likely to see in religious fanatics or cults where there is a strong reliance on faith at the expense of truth. No matter what the evidence which they can see with their own eyes from scientific sources, these people will continue to blame those who have made an informed choice not to vaccinate or to vaccinate selectively for disease in both the fully-vaccinated and those too young to have had their shots.

Evidence such as:

Comparative genomics of prevaccination and modernBordetella pertussis strains


Despite vaccination since the 1950s, pertussis has persisted and resurged. It remains a major cause of infant death worldwide and is the most prevalent vaccine-preventable disease in developed countries. The resurgence of pertussis has been associated with the expansion of Bordetella pertussis strains with a novel allele for the pertussis toxin (Ptx) promoter, ptxP3, which have replaced resident ptxP1 strains. Compared to ptxP1 strains, ptxP3 produce more Ptx resulting in increased virulence and immune suppression. To elucidate how B. pertussis has adapted to vaccination, we compared genome sequences of two ptxP3 strains with four strains isolated before and after the introduction vaccination.


The distribution of SNPs in regions involved in transcription and translation suggested that changes in gene regulation play an important role in adaptation. No evidence was found for acquisition of novel genes. Modern strains differed significantly from prevaccination strains, both phylogenetically and with respect to particular alleles. The ptxP3 strains were found to have diverged recently from modern ptxP1 strains. Differences between ptxP3 and modern ptxP1 strains included SNPs in a number of pathogenicity-associated genes. Further, both gene inactivation and reactivation was observed in ptxP3 strains relative to modern ptxP1 strains.


Our work suggests that B. pertussis adapted by successive accumulation of SNPs and by gene (in)activation. In particular changes in gene regulation may have played a role in adaptation.

Though this is a very technical article, what this means is that use of the vaccine has caused the strain of bacteria that causes whooping cough, b. pertussis, to change in order to survive. The new strains are producing a much more potent toxin (pertussis bacteria per se does not cause the symptoms of whooping cough; instead, it is a toxin that they produce when they are attacked by the immune system that causes the symptoms) than the older strains and this is leading to more severe cases and more deaths in children as seen last year in the US and Australia.

Here is another article on the same subject from the Centres for Disease Control, an organisation that the skeptics and SAVN consider to be one of their temples of enlightenment. Yet when this bastion of truth publishes a study that they don’t agree with, they conveniently ignore it.

Bordetella pertussis Strains with Increased Toxin Production Associated with Pertussis Resurgence

Before childhood vaccination was introduced in the 1940s, pertussis was a major cause of infant death worldwide. Widespread vaccination of children succeeded in reducing illness and death. In the 1990s, a resurgence of pertussis was observed in a number of countries with highly vaccinated populations, and pertussis has become the most prevalent vaccine-preventable disease in industrialized countries. We present evidence that in the Netherlands the dramatic increase in pertussis is temporally associated with the emergence of Bordetella pertussis strains carrying a novel allele for the pertussis toxin promoter, which confers increased pertussis toxin (Ptx) production. Epidemiologic data suggest that these strains are more virulent in humans. We discuss changes in the ecology of B. pertussis that may have driven this adaptation. Our results underline the importance of Ptx in transmission, suggest that vaccination may select for increased virulence, and indicate ways to control pertussis more effectively.

You see, the mutations in pertussis bacteria and its increase in virulence were first noticed in the Netherlands in the early 1990s. There, acceptance of pertussis vaccination was virtually universal and despite (or because) of that, they were seeing increasing numbers of cases and more hospitalisations with some deaths for the first time in many years – exactly the situation we are seeing in Australia.

Instead of burying their heads in the sand like those pseudo-science loving skeptics, they researched and continue to research why this is occurring. Their answer (and these two articles are quite recent – published in 2010 and 2009 respectively) is that low vaccination is not the reason for the resurgence and increase in virulence we are seeing – use of the vaccine is.

When I say this, it is bollocks according to them. When scientists say it, it is ignored or denigrated.

When Julie Leask, a long-time supporter of full vaccination and a scientist working at the Medical Faculty of the University of Sydney wrote in a blog on Croakey that:

The current approach to the anti-vaccinationism movement is missing the mark.

Health professionals often seem to think you can just feed vaccine dissenters the facts, educate them and this will correct wayward thinking.

This demonstrates a poor understanding of the anxieties and wider social shifts at the heart of vaccine debates. These include mistrust driven by poorly handled health scares (CJD in the UK), a thirst for discrete causes of idiopathic ills (eg, autism), increasing tendency to question medicine, middle-class “intensive parenting”, and the appeal of natural health practices.

Tactics like The Skeptics’ which seek to demonise antivaccination polarise the issue taking away any room for grey in a complex issue (vaccines are great but not perfect).

They also give the AVN a media profile which would potentially attract fence-sitting new paid-up members who otherwise would not have contacted the once nearly bankrupted AVN.

When she wrote this piece, the skeptics were up in arms. How dare someone from ‘their side of the fence’ dare to question their tactics?  On the 6th September, 2009, Paul Gall wrote on the wall of the SAVN page that:

On the other hand, calling for “full transparency from the authorities” has that familiar ring to it. Or “parents who were raised to value the fundamental truth of the personal narrative”; isn’t fallout from such narratives what skepticism seeks to manage? (ed note-quotes are from Julie Leask’s Croakey article)

So are the skeptics and SAVN trying to remain true to science or ‘manage’ those who demand full transparency from scientific authorities and the value of fundamental truths? My guess, from long involvement with these organisations is that the truth is the latter, not the former.

When Julie Leask compounded her ‘sin’ of trying to understand why parents are questioning vaccination and taking some of the heat out of this debate in a recent article in the Sydney Morning Herald, How Mommy Instinct Outdid Science, the skeptics and SAVN were incensed.

Leask, a firm supporter of vaccines, nevertheless believes the danger posed by a small cabal of anti-vaccinators, at least in Australia, is often overstated; full immunisation according to the national schedule is achieved in 94 per cent of children by age two, and of the remaining 6 per cent a mere half are conscientious objectors; for the others, practical issues such as time or transport difficulties means they have not got around to it.

She sees last year’s clampdown on immunisation objectors the Australian Vaccination Network, which lost its charity status and was ordered by the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission to prominently declare its anti-vaccine stance on its website, as an ”intensification of the war between radical non-vaccinators and radical pro-vaccinators”.

Health authorities might do better, Leask said, to be less brittle in their cheerleading.

”We know the vaccine issue is grey. It’s not a simple case of vaccines are perfect,” Leask said, and lack of acknowledgment of their limitations meant ”if you get that disease [despite being vaccinated] then you’re going to be disillusioned. If your child gets a mild reaction you’re going to be disillusioned.”

These statements were just too close to what the AVN has been saying for over 17 years for the skeptics to accept it without criticism and in fact, they did severely criticise Julie Leask for her quotes in this article.

For anyone who believes that medical decisions should be based on scientific proof and verifiable evidence, it is obvious that the pertussis vaccine, rather than saving children from this disease, has only led to an increase in incidence and virulence. This is shown in the articles above and many others like them.

Why the skeptics and SAVN continue to claim that low vaccination rates (remember, Australia has a vaccination rate of 94% for children by the age of 2 and the rate for pertussis vaccination is even higher) are the reason for three years of non-stop whooping cough epidemics is a matter for conjecture. But claim this they do without a scrap of scientific evidence, proof or even thought.

It is time for them and the media to step up to the plate and start telling the truth about why we have children dying and in hospital from whooping cough. Low vaccination rates have nothing to do with it.

Vaccination Network Attacked Unfairly

Thank you to Fairfax media and the Southern Highland News who had the courage to print my letter to the editor. If you are able to make a comment on this page in support of freedom of choice and freedom of communication, please do so at the bottom of the letter at the link below:

Vaccination network ‘attacked’ unfairly – Opinion – Letters to the Editor – General – Southern Highland News

THE Australian Vaccination Network has been vilified in the media in recent weeks.

While it is the media’s job to expose wrongdoing when it has been found, it is not their job to act as judge, jury and executioner. Newspapers and radio stations have been reporting ridiculous lies stating that the AVN believes in reptilian aliens and mind-control chips.

They got this misinformation from Ken McLeod, an active member of a group that has set out to either shut our small, volunteer-run organisation down or shut us up in any way they can. That is their agenda. What is the media’s excuse?

And while this beat-up has been taking place, 136 of 139 pharmaceutical and vaccine manufacturing facilities in Australia have failed their TGA audits – yet this hasn’t merited so much as a mention in the press. It seems that drug companies have a privileged position in our society while vaccine safety watchdogs are shut down quicker than you can say “Pan Pharmaceuticals!”

The AVN was formed in 1994 due to a lack of information in the community on the downsides of vaccination. We were started by a group of parents whose children had reacted to this medical procedure and the health practitioners who had helped us.

Daily, we provide support and information to parents in Australia and overseas who are seeking medically based, fully-referenced data on vaccines. Daily, we help parents report to the Australian Government (because their doctors have refused to do so) their children’s serious and sometimes fatal reactions .

Vaccines are not compulsory. It was previously not illegal to criticise vaccines.

The AVN are vaccine whistleblowers and, like all organisations that are perceived to threaten an entrenched status quo, we are now being victimised by a group that openly states their object is to stop us in any way they can.

That this organisation has used these tactics is shameful and should be taken seriously by the authorities.

That the media and government bodies such as the HCCC have co-operated with them – even sending people who request more information about the current “investigations” to their website – is criminal.

It is time the Australian people learnt the truth about the co-ordinated attacks on the Australian Vaccination Network by those who want, above all, to stop anyone questioning the safety or effectiveness of vaccines.

I invite everyone who is interested in knowing more about the facts behind these attacks to read the documents that can be found at and on our website,


Australian Vaccination Network


What you say defines who you are

It’s said that you can tell a lot about a person by the company they keep. Well, I think the same can be said about an organisation.

Stop the AVN, the group that was established to force the shut-down the Australian Vaccination Network, a legally-operating, volunteer-run health and vaccine safety watchdog, proves this point perfectly.

When I was due to speak in South Australia recently, members of this group sent letters to the venue, asking them to cancel the event and giving descriptions of both myself and the AVN which were based on their own twisted distortions.

I believe that if you read their letters, you will get a very good idea of exactly what they are on about and most of it would not be considered – normal – in a civilised society.

For those who are interested, the claims that they make about my personal beliefs were sourced by following links on articles that I have posted. I do not endorse the things they say I do, nor have I ever done so.

These people have outright lied (as anyone who has ever contacted us for support would know – to accuse us of abusing them or providing links to pornography is more than absurd!) but slander seems to be their method of operation and they do not let a little thing like the truth stand in their way.

This is a selection of 5 letters out of dozens sent to different venues where the AVN was due to hold seminars. To the best of my knowledge, all 5 of these authors have made official complaints about the AVN to the HCCC; only one of which was provided to me by that organisation.

These are the ‘rational’ and ‘sane’ people who the HCCC took notice of when compiling their report on the AVN. After you have read this, read a copy of our final response to the HCCC and ask yourself what sort of evidence the HCCC relied upon to make their decision.

Dear Pastor,

It is my understanding that Meryl Dorey is scheduled to give a talk at your church. I urge you to reconsider the invitation for the following reasons:

  • Meryl Dorey and the AVN are anti-vaccination conspiracy theorists and are currently under investigation by the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission.
  • Meryl Dorey subscribes to many conspiracy theories, including:
  • The Queen and Presdient Obama are reptilian aliens with a thirst for human blood.
  • There is a European based “Illuminati” that plan a mass cull of human beings by way of the swine flu vaccine.
  • Vaccines given at birth are a cover to implant micro-chips into people for the purpose of mind control.
  • Meryl Dorey denies the existence of the AIDS virus which has killedm millions.
  • The AVN has caused, by way of their rhetoric, a sharp decline in vaccinations in the Northern Rivers region of NSW and as a result there is an epidemic of whooping cough, which has already cost the lives of 3 children.

Some of my claims against Meryl Dorey may seem outlandish, but they are made in good faith after having read her own words and having been provided with ample evidence, which I am more than happy to forward to you if you wish to investigate the matter further.

If you were expecting a frank, balanced discussion by the AVN on the subject of vaccination, prepare to be sorely disappointed. They are, purely and simply, dangerous conspiracy theorists with no regard for the health of children. They serve only their own agenda.

As well as a complaint to the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission, which is being investigated, there are also letters fo support with additional evidence against the AVN being submitted, as well as a petition in support which has so far garnered more than 400 signatures.

Ultimately, the decision is yours, but I must strongly recommend that the invitation extended to Meryl Dorey to talk at your church be rescinded. As mentioned above, I am only too happy to provide you with additional material upon request.

Yours sincerely,

To the XXXXXXX Congregation,

I am writing to you with regards to an upcoming seminar to be conducted by Meryl Dorey of the AVN, on the 19th of August.

I was attracted to the AVN because they appeared to have an objective of providing credible information, allowing people to make informed choices with regards to health and particularly vaccination, so I joined their group on Facebook.

Unfortunately my experience was not a happy one. Much of the information I found was inaccurate, anecdotal and deceptive. On assessment I came to the conclusion that the Australian Vaccination Network is not about informed choice, but rather promoting anti vaccination through hysteria and fear mongering.

When I requested the references to the material they presented, I was presented with pictures of dead babies, abused, provided with links to pornography and eventually banned from their group, simply because I politely and respectfully asked questions.

My observation is that the AVN attracts a following of ‘true believers’ that are absolutely closed minded to the possibility that they may be deceived, deluded or just plain wrong. Anyone critical of the AVN is demonised and individuals portrayed as either good or evil. Their ideology makes exaggerated claims for possessing airtight logic, making
it appear as an absolute truth with no contradictions.

These are the attributes of a cult and I suggest that you reconsider the seminar.

Of further concern is that members of the AVN Facebook group are also members of an openly anti vaccination group called Vaccination Information Network (VINE), who subscribe to a bizarre conspiracy theory, based around microchips concealed in vaccines that will enable the Illuminati to control the human race.

I am sorry I am not making this up.

Please feel free to contact me, should you wish to discuss this further.

Warm Regards

Dear Pastor XXXX

I refer to the forthcoming seminar to be presented by Ms Meryl Dorey, of the Australian Vaccination Network, on Wednesday August 19th, 7:15 which I understand will be conducted at your Church’s premisis.

This is to inform you that Ms Dorey and the AVN have maintained a consistent anti-vaccination campaign for over 15 years, and her writings have been roundly condemned by experts in the field of immunology and the medical profession. Indeed she and the AVN are being investigated by the New South Wales Health Care Complaints Commission for providing incorrect medical advice. See

Anti-vaccination lobbyists, including Ms Dorey and the AVN, have been condemned by Nobel laureate Professor Peter Doherty, who has said that Childhood Vaccination Denial is a “Crime Against Humanity.”

You should be aware that Ms Dorey has admitted on television that she has no qualifications whatever, apart from “having a brain.”

The parents of baby Dana McCaffery (who died of Pertussis this year) have written that they are outraged that without their knowledge, “Meryl Dorey rang the Director of the North Coast Area Health Service Public Health Unit on 12 March 2009 seeking details on Dana’s death and contended the department had misled the public.”

They go on:
“Even after I told Meryl what happened to Dana at the (TV) debate, a few weeks afterwards I found an AVN blog with members making false claims that stated they had information she was sick from birth, immune-compromised from the HiB vaccine or died as a result of the antibiotics or medical treatment she received.

“Not only is no-one privy to this information, it is wrong and extremely distressing. In the latest Living Wisdom, Meryl got every fact wrong about Dana – her age, when she died, where she might have caught it, when the last death was and uses language to downplay the seriousness.” [i][i]

So, Meryl Dorey is not above the most egregious invasions of privacy, she is quite capable of misrepresenting the facts to suit her agenda, while engaging in wild conspiracy theories. MS Dorey is not a qualified health professional and her presentations are completely unbalanced. She is no expert, will not present good science or a balanced view of vaccination issues, her presentation will damage the reputation of your church, and will be detrimental to the health of the children in your community.

I ask to you to reconsider your decision to make your premises available to the Australian Vaccination Network.

Yours sincerely,


Dear Sir/Madam,

RE: Seminar 19 August 2009 – Australian Vaccination Network

It has come to my attention that the above seminar is now being held at the XXXXX Church, XXXX SA after the original host, the XXXX, decided that it was not appropriate for the school to be associated with the above seminar. (Meryl’s note: The school cancelled after receiving these same letters. The cancellation had nothing to do with the appropriateness of our information and everything to do with intimidation at the hands of SAVN.)

I would like to bring to your attention what the Australian  Vaccination Network is about, citing evidence from their own discussion forums and seminars. In contrast to their misleading name, the Australian Vaccination Network, the AVN, is an outspoken anti-vaccination group that subscribes to various conspiracy  theories.

Their anti-vaccination stance is quite disturbing. The president, Meryl Dorey, describes vaccines as “instruments of death”, and  cites the recent measles epidemic and swine flu pandemic as being deliberately manufactured. Further to that, she presents articles outlining that the swine flu vaccine is a conspiracy to infect the global population with mind-control nanobots to inflict genocide at a later date. This article was originally written by the well-known conspiracy theorist, David Icke, and the article goes on to mention the illuminati, reptilian overlords and the like. (original article:

In addition, Meryl Dorey and the AVN also support AIDS denialism, as can be evidenced here The doubters on this page do not believe that HIV causes AIDS, that AIDS medicines extend life, that AIDS is heterosexually transmitted, or that HIV and AIDS are decimating Africa and Asia. I note that this stance is in direct conflict with the following Lutheran Church policy

At present the AVN and Meryl Dorey are under investigation by the Health Care Complaints Commission after a complaint was lodged that the AVN is a threat to public health.

I ask that your church review its decision to allow a destructive conspiracy theory group such as the AVN use of your facilities, or to be associated with your organisation.

Yours Sincerely,