In the news today Herald Sun shared an EXCLUSIVE of Victorian Health Minister Jill Hennessy who has turned the tables on vile anti-vaccine campaigners constant abuse and harassment by making their threats public.

Catherine Hughes and her family have been fighting for vaccine awareness since their baby Riley passed away in March 2015 from whooping cough at just 32 days old.

Riley’s dad has shared on the Light for Riley Facebook page some of the abuse they themselves have also received from antivaxxers. He is speaking in support of Minister Hennessy saying she should not be alone in her stand against these acts.

He wrote, “As a family who have been constantly attacked by this section of the community, I applaud Jill Hennessy MP for taking a stand against some of the abhorrent cruelty she’s received through online bullying, trolling and vitriol. Whilst we’ve taken a stance as a family to generally not acknowledge this group of individuals, I felt that Minister Hennessy should not be alone in her stand against these acts.

To give you an insight into the type of attacks we personally have had to endure:

*We’ve been labelled terrorists who are akin to ISIS
*We’ve been labelled baby killers
*We’ve been told that our son was simply a stock image and we were paid actors who were simply spreading ‘BigPharma’s message’ in order to profit
*We’ve been accused of having links to the pharmaceutical industry (we don’t)
*We’ve been told our son deserved to die because ‘it’s a case of the weaker members of society dying off so that the strong can remain’ (this was sent to us in a private message roughly 24 hours after Riley had passed away)
*We’ve been told that ‘our new baby will come out with numerous deformities and it will be karma’
*We’ve been compared to the Nazi Germany regime because we’ve ‘promoted child death and disability’

These are just a small number of the insults that have been labelled at my family and particularly my wife.

Whenever you consider the misinformation being spread by these individuals, consider what kind of person would be willing to send messages such as those above and what they have to gain from such misinformation.

Online bullying in any form should never be tolerated, and the insidious manner in which this group conducts itself must be called out in order to debunk the misinformation and aggression this community continually directs towards members of the community who have nothing more than the best interests of children and families in mind.

Rant Over
-Riley’s Dad”

Unbelievable! Some people seriously have nothing better to do.

Share your comments below.

Image via Facebook

  • That’s disgusting! They lost their beautiful little baby to a preventable disease, of course they’re going to come out encouraging vaccinations


  • Totally ridiculous. Everyone is entitled to an opinion. anti vaxers need to do some research.


  • Just disgusting!,! This family is only making people aware of what can happen to your children if you choose not to vaccinate. Jûst goes to show how deranged anti vaxxers are


  • Seriously this is disgusting – the fact that these people can abuse someone who has just lost a child is truly sickening and they are disgusting people for doing so.

    I hope that there can be a legal case raised against these people who have obviously posted on social media these comments which can be tracked back to the user. I would like to see justice done for Riley’s family by having the abusers charged with an appropriate charge and have it stick – surely a monetary fine could be imposed on them and that money given to Riley’s family

    Lets teach these keyboard warriors that these are real people suffering real pain and that hiding away in your bedroom being a keyboard warrior will get you fined/charged with harrassment/abuse etc!


  • If only people could respect, truly listen to and empathise with each other the world would become a better place. Vaccers and anti-vaccers are both not able to do that towards each other.


  • How awful. To have to endure the loss of a child would be devastating but to have ongoing abuse about it must be tortuous. I agree, you can’t reason with unreasonable people. Their comments just go to show their true colours and how ridiculous and out of touch they are with the main stream community. What kind of person threatens another person like that? Not one I want in my community. I’d like to see them put their money where their mouth is and volunteer on a paediatric infectious diseases ward. Everyone who says vaccination is a conspiracy should have to hold the hand of a baby or child suffering or dying from a preventable disease, then tell me that vaccinations are a hoax or a money making scheme.


  • Anti-vaxxers are unreasonable and you cannot reason with unreasonable people. I hope the message to vaccinate gets through to them before they lose a family member to a preventable illness.


  • Riley’s death was a result of coming into contact with a person who had come into contact with Whooping Cough who’s probably anti-vaxx. If one of their children succumbs the same way are they going to prevent it happening to the rest of their family, relatives, friends etc.?
    There has been other lives or the quality of lives put at risk because of other preventable diseases too.


  • Absurd, really! I can’t believe there are people spending their time attacking not only the Health Minister, but Riley’s family too. I find the all thing quite distusting. :-(


  • That’s so true, these trolls should get a life and leave these poor grieving parents alone!


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