After yesterday’s hysteria from Meryl Dorey about “rabid anti-vaccine safety (cough) press”, to describe accurate reporting about her antivaccination lobbying, AVN fans must be much happier with a piece from Lismore’s Northern Star.
It goes very easy on the illegal money raising tricks and public health damage we know and love from the Australian Vaccination Network. However, in a nice surprise it confirms a scandalous grab for money from businesses to help the AVN in it’s civil action against the HCCC. The piece, Vaccine group aims to win out West includes:
The NSW Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing (OLGR) revoked the AVN’s licence to fundraise as a charity last year after a warning from the Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC) that its website contained information that was “misleading and incorrect”.
The then gaming and racing minister said the group “breached charitable fundraising laws and potentially misled the public” and was no longer permitted to accept charitable donations. The AVN launched a civil suit against the commission in the NSW Supreme Court which is due to begin on November 9 in Sydney.
“We are hopeful of winning on the grounds that the complaint against us was not valid and that the HCCC failed to carry out a proper investigation,” Ms Dorey said.
The AVN had had to depend on donations from members since the OLGR ruling, but its barrister in the civil action was acting on a pro bono basis, she said.
Pro bono eh? Well that immediately calls into question the fate of pledges called for by Meryl Dorey in August 2010. There has been no public announcement from the AVN that donations are not needed. Nor has there been any clear and concise deliberation on the fate of monies donated to and collected by the AVN. This was the case with the raising of almost $12,000 to place a fictitious advertisement in a magazine, and also with the raising of another $12,000 to assist a family “on the run from Hepatitis B vaccination”. Money the family never saw but a story – a lie – which Meryl Dorey still tells to this day along with falsely claiming to have helped a family in QLD.
The AVN has helped not one family in this way. Of course these scams are dwarfed by the money raised through lying to members about placing material in Bounty Bags, given to new mothers. Money was raised but no material produced. So the OLGR has very good reason to revoke the charity licence of a fraudster. You can read up on the court action to date, and how Dorey’s own arrogance actually brought about far worse condemnation from the HCCC than the initial request for transparency on antivaccination status.
Which brings us back to an outrageous email to members in August, 2010. It’s a bumper edition of lies, conspiracies and demonstrable deceit, interspersed with delusions of grandeur. Under the heading Urgent Update – what is happening with the AVN? Dorey goes on a long winded rant of persecution, promises and piffle. Including [bold mine]:
After discussions with our legal advisers, we have been told that there is one chance for us to overcome the push to shut us down – and it is far from 100% even if we are successful.
In speaking with many other organisations and seeking out the best possible legal advice, we have discovered that this is not the first time the HCCC has stepped outside of its jurisdiction to persecute a non-profit organisation. There is another group who was in our situation less than a decade ago. They fought against the HCCC – all the way to the Supreme Court. And they won! It cost them $150,000 – but they got every cent back and more because the court found that the HCCC had acted outside of its jurisdiction when they tried to prosecute this organisation.
As I said, we will not seek donations from our members – so please don’t worry about donating as an individual. If you have a business however, and are in a position to donate a larger amount – say $10,000 to $20,000 – and this donation can be given as sponsorship so it will be tax-deductible, then we want to know about it.
We are not asking you to give us your money at this point in time. Like we did when we had our large fund-raiser earlier this year, we are only asking for pledges. If we get enough pledges to get this action going (and we need a minimum of $100,000 – $150,000), then we will go for it. We will NOT give up if we are given the means to fight. I’m in this until the bitter end if businesses will support me, as is the rest of our incredibly dedicated committee.
“Push to shut us down”? Paranoid much or just misleading readers? All the HCCC asked for was an admission that the group is anti-vaccine and that their advice is not to be taken as medical advice. Today we have a bit more clarity through which to view this piece. On day one in court it was immediately established that Dorey was most certainly within HCCC jurisdiction. Most curious however is this “other group” who fought against the HCCC.
In Meryl Dorey’s trouble with the truth part 3 – Lies and Fraud on page 55, Ken McLeod highlights Dorey’s three comparisons to the HCCC supposedly stepping “outside of it’s jurisdiction to persecute…”. Quoting Peter Bowditch it’s shown that the Walker Inquiry was not “into the HCCC” as claimed by Dorey. The investigation into Graeme Reeves had nothing to do with “those in the natural health area” and Reeves was in fact deregistered. That finally leaves this mysterious group who defeated the HCCC in the Supreme Court NSW getting back their money “and more”. McLeod writes:
I and some lawyers have gone through the Supreme Court Case Law database, and there is no mention of such a case. So, this claim is pure invention.
Which is certainly Meryl Dorey’s form. Fiction. Now that she has publically admitted to pro bono defence one would hope in the interests of transparency that a full disclosure of any pledges given, collected or declined will be made as equally public. Yet this email yields quite a lot more fiction. For example:
And we are certainly not giving up. We have a lot of work to do and an awful lot of plans that are nearing fruition. For instance, we are planning on sending a delegation to Canberra for the next sitting of Parliament (when we actually have a government in place, that is) to request the following changes to Federal legislation:1- A requirement for all health practitioners to report vaccine reactions to the TGA when these reactions are reported to them by parents.2- A requirement to reveal the vaccination status of those who contract ‘vaccine preventable’ illnesses.3- The funding of a study using the already-available information from the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register’s (ACIR’s) database which currently tracks who is vaccinated and who is not.
Completely false. The AVN has to my knowledge not lobbied Parliament beyond urging members to write letters or lying to senators about unprovable vaccine reactions. Certainly the notion of “sending a delegation to Canberra for the next sitting of Parliament”, is close to hilarious. But there’s more:
In addition, we have made contact (finally!) with labs and researchers overseas who are willing to work with us on testing the currently-licensed Australian vaccines for the presence of heavy metals and other ingredients such as vegetable oils. If these results come back as we expect they will, this information may well blow the currently-held beliefs in the safety of modern vaccines out of the water.
Again false. The AVN has no contact with overseas researchers or labs and no-one is willing to work with them to test anything but the vacuum of truth to similar claims. The money needed to pursue such a venture is extraordinary and this lie is designed as a gap filler for the very same money raising scam they have pulled since the early 1990’s. The so-called independent testing has been imminent for almost two decades and it’s high time Dorey abandoned this pie in the sky waffling. I’ll gladly accept any input to prove this wrong.
Dorey also floats off into some quite bizarre musings:
You may not be aware of this, but the persecution of the AVN has started a tidal wave which is reaching out to all other natural therapies and therapists. Many of these organisations have not wanted to be involved with our group though many of their individual members have been long-time supporters. Let’s face it – this is a very controversial issue and as you can see by what’s happened with me and the rest of the AVN – when you raise your profile as being a pro-information advocate, you are likely to get knocked down in a very ugly way.
So for 17 years, natural therapy organisations have used our resources and directed patients to us for help and support, but in general, they, and many therapists have not taken a stand on this issue.
A tidal wave of persecution? Rubbish. The Wellness Industry is thriving in Australia and in no small part thanks to the paper tiger stand of regulatory authorities. All kicked off because Mother AVN is in trouble? Well that scarcely explains Cure All homeopath, Fran Sheffield snubbing her nose at the TGA and Complaints Resolution Panel (CRP) after a complaint was upheld on November 26th, 2009 as reported here by ABC Lateline.
For 17 years the AVN has had “patients” directed to them for help and support by natural therapists? I doubt it. The position of the Australian Natural Therapies Association is in support of conventional vaccination. As the CRP reported in upholding a complaint against false claims made about the efficacy of homeopathic immunisation – a favourite of the AVN:
The Executive Director of the Australian Natural Therapies Association has stated that no properly qualified natural therapist would recommend homoeopathic ‘immunisation’ as an alternative to conventional immunisation.
Despite claiming yesterday “I always say to people to go to their doctor and get information”, it seems to be a problem as the email continues under, “What has the result of this been?“:
The National Registration Board of the CAA is trying to put through a policy which will require that Chiropractors not be allowed to discuss vaccination with their patients. Instead, they will be required to direct parents to a GP for answers to any questions they may have.
There is a bloc in the WA Parliament that is trying to get homeopathy outlawed due to one woman’s choice to use homeopathic remedies to treat her cancer – a treatment which ultimately failed – but that was her choice. The 100 Australians who die every day on chemotherapy are not considered in this equation – but one woman who dies whilst using a natural therapy is a reason to destroy a 200-year old evidence-based therapy that is in competition with allopathy.
And every day now, there are more and more supplement manufacturers, suppliers of herbal medicines, Chinese herbal medicine producers and others who provide healthy, natural products, who are being targeted, not allowed to advertise their products or services and shut down by the TGA and their minions. The AVN has always been there for these groups – we and our members have supported you. Now, it’s time to see if you have the intestinal fortitude to stand tall and support not only the AVN’s but your own continued survival.
Stop, Stop, Stop! Dorey goes on to ask for $1,000 from any of these businesses she has “always been there for”. Those that must have the “intestinal fortitude” to hand over money to help out the AVN and thus, save themselves. The size of this woman’s ego and delusional narcissism is breath taking.
Dorey is actually claiming that her unnecessary fighting of the HCCC request to have a sign posted on her website and a public warning they issued, which she herself began civil action over is:
- An orchestrated push to shut them down
- Media, advocacy and government plotting
- Reason for other businesses to pledge large amounts of money
- The beginning of the end for the Wellness Industry
- The catalyst for the CAA Regulation Board to prevent chiropractors discussing vaccination
- The reason WA parliamentarians are concerned at the lack of regulation of homeopathy as evidenced by Penelope Dingle’s death
- Increased targetting of natural product and therapy providers who are being “shut down by the TGA and their minions”
- Reason for small providers to hand over money to Dorey for “your own continued survival”
- And quite a bit more besides…
Fortunately most decisions are made with neurons surrounded by the skull not the intestine, no matter how fortified. The crucial point here is this cost is a cost Dorey alone brought upon herself. She could have done what most other suspect and shonky providers do and simply ignore the request. The HCCC can realistically do nothing beyond the public health warning.
Far from shutting people down, “the TGA and their minions” are simply ignored. Fran Sheffield of Homeopathy Plus responded to a CRP request to post a retraction of false advertising claims that homeopathy could prevent diptheria, smallpox, polio, influenza, measles, pertussis, rubella, mumps, meningococcal disease, etc with:
“Well obviously I’m disagreeing with them and that’s why the retraction hasn’t gone up”
The real question is why has Dorey chosen to self sabotage and why does she assume it’s the responsibility of everyone else to solve this for her? Her terrifying claims about the TGA are close to insulting. Fran Sheffield is not alone. 80 of 82 complaints pertaining to the Advertising Code this year were upheld by the TGA. The two that weren’t were from competing companies.
As written in the recent Auditor Generals performance audit into the regulation of complementary medicine:
The size of penalties attached to criminal offences may also mean that it is seen as not in the public interest to proceed. This view is consistent with legal advice provided to the Advertising Unit about specific breaches.
The TGA has also observed that “prosecution is currently the only available option where administrative requests fail to achieve compliance”. There have never been any cases that have been referred for prosecution action and accepted. As a consequence, the prospect of using prosecution action against non‐compliant behaviour, and as a deterrent, seems limited.
In 2010 a DoHA review found 90% of products reviewed were found to be non-compliant with regulatory requirements. The infamous 31 products selected at random yielded 68 breaches;
- 20 medicines had labelling issues such as non‐compliance with labelling requirements and/or breaches which may mislead consumers.
- 12 included incomplete and/or inappropriate information on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG).
- 22 were found to have manufacturing and/or quality issues.
- 14 did not have adequate evidence to substantiate claims made about the medicines.
No-one is being “shut down” by Australia’s appalling feather touch of the TGA. More so, Meryl Dorey’s claimed position as being the head domino is some cascade of Wellness Industry persecution is demonstrably false and a product of her own ego, cunning and imagination. It’s high time Meryl Dorey stopped crying persecution and took responsibility for her own conduct.
The real victims are the innocent children, babies and parents who suffer from the consequences of decreasing vaccination.