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Anti-Covid-19 restrictions campaigners’ GoFundMe account axed

Activist: Eugene Dean of the Bermuda Freedom Alliance (Photograph supplied).

A major crowdfunding website has rejected a bid by campaigners opposed to the Government’s Covid-19 vaccination programme to use it to raise cash.

The Bermuda Freedom Alliance linked up with the GoFundMe platform last year to raise cash to record interviews with doctors who questioned the vaccine.

But GoFundMe this week pulled the plug on the campaigners against the Government’s coronavirus restrictions and vaccination programme.

GoFundMe told the alliance: “We’re reaching out to you to inform you that your GoFundMe account has been removed because it violates our terms of service …

“Specifically, the content of your fundraiser fails under the ‘prohibited conduct’ section.

“Our terms of service, along with strictly enforced policies from the payments industry, prohibit GoFundMe from allowing you to continue raising money on our platform.

The company told the group: “Any donations made to your fundraiser that have already been transferred to the bank account on file have been refunded.

“Those funds will arrive back in your donors’ bank accounts within three to seven business days.

“We ask that you please do not respond to this e-mail as we cannot reinstate your GoFundMe account.”

Mr Dean said the GoFundMe decision was unfair and stifled debate.

He highlighted the US Centres For Disease Control’s admission that “breakthrough infections in people who are fully vaccinated are likely to occur”.

Mr Dean claimed: “With Omicron, we have found that the vast majority of positive cases are people who have taken the jab.

“There have always been breakthrough cases.”

The CDC website said: “We don’t yet know yet how easily it spreads, the severity of illness it causes or how well available vaccines and medications work against it.”

The Government's latest vaccination-related figures – released on January 4 – revealed that more than 77 per cent of 912 active coronavirus cases were in people who had been vaccinated.

A spokeswoman for the health ministry said: “Bermuda has a successful vaccine programme with over 70 per cent of the total population receiving two doses and over 50 per cent of those persons who received their first two doses already receiving a booster, with booster appointments still being fully booked daily.

“We continue to encourage all residents to speak to their doctor about getting the Covid vaccine and do their part to reduce the possibility that they end up in hospital if they get infected with their coronavirus.

“The more persons vaccinated, the less likely our hospital becomes overrun if they contract the coronavirus.”

A government spokeswoman said last week that the vaccine was “recognised globally as one of the single most important measures that individuals can take to protect against severe disease, hospitalisation and death”.

She added: “Pfizer’s vaccine has proven to be effective in 95 per cent of people.

“The ministry stressed that the Pfizer vaccine – two doses and a booster – has shown to have very good protection against the Omicron variant.”

She said that the Government’s 2021 vaccination drive included education and promotional efforts.

The spokeswoman added: “One year on, the ministry continues to recommend that residents who have yet to become immunised, and who are able, after consulting with their physician, to do so.

She said the ministry also wanted people who had been vaccinated but had not yet been given the booster, to sign up for the jab.

The ministry said that more than 115,000 vaccinations had been given since the programme started in January last year.

The spokeswoman added: This is a noteworthy accomplishment, especially amid an ever-shifting coronavirus landscape.”

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Published January 18, 2022 at 7:53 am (Updated January 18, 2022 at 7:38 am)

Anti-Covid-19 restrictions campaigners’ GoFundMe account axed

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