Media Release 31 Oct 2011
Family First NZ is rejecting a call for the cervical cancer vaccine to be given to all boys as young as 11, saying the idea is flawed and sends a dangerous message.
“We should be asking young people to change risky sexual behavior rather than using taxpayer funding to attempt to lessen the harm, We seem to be scrambling to enable at-risk behavior rather than giving our young people the truth,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “The public health case for vaccinating all boys is far weaker than it was for vaccinating girls, which was also weak.”
“Parents will be rightly outraged that so-called ‘experts’ want the government to fund the vaccinating of all our young boys against the harms of oral and anal sex. The message to young people is that they are protected but shots of Gardasil won’t inoculate people from other negative consequences, both physical and emotional. We are tip-toeing around the fundamental issue of the myth of ‘safe sex’ and what values our young people should really be taught.”
“Telling a child it’s ok to run across a dangerous road but it’ll be ok if you wear a helmet is simply the wrong message.”
“At the moment, students are being proselytized with unbalanced information through their schools or health organizations, and parents are being bullied into an uninformed response.”
“It is vital that the government is not a victim of aggressive marketing worldwide by the vaccine makers with many questions regarding its effectiveness still unanswered – including its duration of protection, potential side-effects, its cost effectiveness, and most importantly, the underlying message it sends,” says Mr McCoskrie.
Significantly, figures just released in Australia show that the number of Australian women killed by cervical cancer has halved since the introduction, not of Gardasil, but of the national screening program a decade ago.