The Informed Medical Options Party[2] (formerly known as the Involuntary Medication Objectors (Vaccination/Fluoride) Party) is an Australian political party. It was registered for federal elections on 26 October 2016.[3]

The party's policies oppose compulsory vaccination programs and water fluoridation on the basis of pseudoscientific conspiracies that vaccination and water fluoridation are harmful to human health.[1] The Party states that these are "mass-medication programs" where there is "genuine scientific uncertainty about the benefits and risks in a genetically diverse population". Australian Medical Association president Tony Bartone said the party's views "lack the backing of scientific evidence" and that its members "should consider the harm that can ensue upon the Australian community".[2]

Party secretary Michael O'Neill said the "anti-vaxxer" label regularly used by critics was "insulting".[4]

The party ran candidates in NSW, Qld and WA in the May 2019 Australian federal election for the Australian Senate and received a total of 17,055 total votes as first preference.[5] They were not successful in having a candidate elected.[6]

Tom Barnett, a party candidate in the 2019 federal election stated: "You can’t catch a virus; it's impossible" and "the only way that you can catch a virus is by having it injected into your bloodstream". This contrasts with science-based health advice on how a virus may spread.[7]

In 2020 the Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt opposed the party's application to change its name to the Informed Medical Options Party saying "that such a name would be misleading".[2] The party was successful in its application.[4]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c "No jab, no vote: new anti-vax party registered - Involuntary Medication Objectors Party registered by AEC". Crikey. Melbourne Vic. 8 November 2016. Archived from the original on 4 January 2020.
  2. ^ a b c McCauley, Dana (3 February 2020). "Health Minister urges electoral commission to reject 'anti-vaxxer' party's new name". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Archived from the original on 30 April 2020.
  3. ^ "Notice under s.133(1A) of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 – Involuntary Medication Objectors (Vaccination/Fluoride) Party". Australian Electoral Commission. 7 November 2016. Archived from the original on 4 January 2020. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
  4. ^ a b Hope, Zach (2 May 2020). "Vaccination-sceptic political party wins name change despite heavyweight objectors". The Age. Fairfax Media. Archived from the original on 3 May 2020.
  5. ^ "First preferences by Senate group - National". Australian Electoral Commission. 27 June 2019. Archived from the original on 4 January 2020. Retrieved 4 January 2020.
  6. ^ "Senators elected - National". Australian Electoral Commission. 27 June 2019. Archived from the original on 4 January 2020. Retrieved 4 January 2020.
  7. ^ O'Connor, Ciaran (3 April 2020). "Coronavirus Australia: YouTube and Facebook remove Aussie's baseless video claiming, 'You can't catch a virus'". News.Com.Au. News Pty Ltd. Archived from the original on 7 April 2020.